The LDF government in Kerala has appointed Harvard economist Gita Gopinath as Financial Adviser to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan. However, her appointment has raised concerns among Left supporters who think her neo-liberal policies are not in line with the party’s ideology. The latest to join the anti-Gita bandwagon is prominent economist Prabhat Patnaik.
Ms. Gopinath is the John Zwaanstra Professor of International Studies and of Economics at Harvard University. Her expertise lies in International Finance and Macroeconomics. She received a B.A. from Lady Shri Ram College in 1992. She has an M.A. from Delhi School of Economics and another M.A. from the University of Washington in 1996. She completed her P.hd from Princeton University in 2001. She is a protégé of Ben Bernanke, the former Chairman of the Federal Reserve. Ms. Gopinath’s father is from Mayyil and her mother from Kuttiatoor in Kannur.
She has been given an honorary position with the Kerala government and will not be remunerated for the same. Unfazed by the controversy, Ms. Gopinath, in a written reply to The Kochi Post, said she is humbled by the opportunity to contribute her skills and effort to the development of Kerala.