India PM appoints ex-IMF chief economist as adviser

NEW DELHI, Nov 3 (Reuters) - Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Monday appointed former International Monetary Fund chief economist Raghuram Rajan as an economic adviser.

Indian policymakers are struggling to fend off damage to the domestic economy from the global financial crisis and on Monday Singh said his government would take all steps necessary to protect growth in Asia’s third-lagrest economy.

A statement from the Prime Minister’s Office said Rajan had been appointed as an honorary economic adviser to Singh and would hold the rank of a secretary to the government of India.

Rajan recently headed a panel on financial sector reforms in India, which issued a draft report calling on the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to have the single objective of controlling inflation.

The 229-page draft said the central bank should set a target range for inflation and move to a single instrument such as short-term rates to achieve that goal.

Rajan, is currently a finance professor at the University of Chicago’s Graduate School of Business. (Reporting by Surojit Gupta; Editing by Mark Williams)