Montek Singh Ahluwalia

Profile photo of Montek Singh Ahluwalia

Former Deputy Chairman, Planning Commission of India   Montek Singh Ahluwalia was most recently Deputy Chairman of the Planning Commission of India, a Cabinet level position, which he held from July 2004 till May 2014. He has been a key figure in India’s economic reforms since the mid-1980s.

Before joining the Government of India Mr. Ahluwalia held various positions in the World Bank , including Chief of the Income Distribution Division. From 1979 to 2001 he served the Government of India as Economic Advisor in the Ministry of Finance, after which he held a series of positions including Special Secretary to the Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi, Commerce Secretary, Secretary in the Department of Economic Affairs, Finance Secretary in the Ministry of Finance, Member of the Planning Commission and Member of the Economic Advisory Council to the Prime Minister. In 2001, Mr. Ahluwalia was appointed the first Director of the newly created Independent Evaluation Office of the International Monetary Fund, a position he held for three years resigning from it to return to India to become Deputy Chairman of the Planning Commission.

Mr. Ahluwalia received a BA (Hons) degree from St. Stephens College, Delhi University. He went to Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar and received an M.A. and an M.Phil degree in Economics from Oxford University. He has received several honorary doctorates, including the Doctor of Civil Law (Honoris Causa) from Oxford University. He has written on various aspects of development economics, including Indian economic policy, and his articles have been published in a number of professional international journals and also in books. He co-authored Re-distribution with Growth: An Approach to Policy (1975). In 2011, he was awarded the prestigious Padma Vibhushan, India’s second highest civilian honor, by President of India for his outstanding contribution to economic policy and public service. In 2019 he published Backstage:The story of India’s high growth years.