List of RBI Governors from 1935 to 2022, Check the complete list of RBI Governors, their powers, tenure and more

Safalta Expert Published by: Kirti Singh Updated Wed, 28 Sep 2022 08:28 AM IST


Check the complete list of RBI Governors from 1935 to 2020, qualifications, responsibilities, and other details.

Looking for the list of RBI Governors? If yes, then you have reached the right page. The Reserve Bank of India is the most prestigious organisation in the Banking and Finance sector. Being the Central Bank of the fastest growing economy RBI has an important role to play. RBI was established on 1st April 1935 under the RBI Act, 1934 and was formed with the recommendation of the “Hilton - Young Commission”.  The candidates preparing for various examinations must beware of the List of Governors of the Reserve Bank Of India. . Osborne Smith was the first governor of RBI in 1935 and Shaktikanta Das is the current governor of RBI.  The space below has detailed information on the List of RBI Governors. 
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Table Of Contents

  1. Who appointed the RBI governor?
  2. Qualification for RBI governor
  3. Responsibilities of RBI governors
  5. Longest and Shortest Term Governors

Who appointed the RBI governor?

RBI governor appointed Under Section 8 of the RBI Act 1934, the central government has the power to appoint Governors and Deputy Governors to the Reserve Bank of India. Recently, Shaktikanta Das has been appointed the Governor of RBI  for a period of three years. 

Qualification for RBI governor

The RBI Act doesn’t mention any specific qualification for the Governor. Persons with different educational qualifications were also selected as Governors in the past.  But a be governor of RBI it is necessary to have knowledge of financial or economic strategies and with the (Economic Affairs Secretary/Financial Secretary etc.,) or were Economists. This means that the qualification for Governor is a matter of convention rather than a rule.  In the past, the Governor is appointed by either Civil Services Personnel or Economists. The message is that if a civil servant has experience in Economic management, he can be appointed as the Governor. Regarding the educational qualifications of previous Governors, CD Deshmukh graduated in Botany and Venkitaramanan in Physics.

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The present Governor- Shakthikanta Das is a Post Graduate of History. But those two had non-economics backgrounds associated with economic or financial management in the civil services. Profile of RBI Governors from 1934 (25 Governors and Shakthikanta Das being the latest) shows that 14 out of 25 Governors were Civil Servants (IAS or ICS/IAAS officers) and only 7 were Economists.

Responsibilities of RBI governors

The post of RBI Governor is full of responsibilities, for this post, a sincere person has to discharge many responsibilities which are mentioned below…..
  • As the head of the most famous financial institutions, RBI leaders are responsible for maintaining monetary stability in an economy. Thus, he plays an important role in shaping the policies of the Reserve Bank of India.
  • The Governor of the RBI is also responsible for issuing licenses to open new foreign and private banks.
  • The power to control the country’s interest rates on deposits and deposits rests with the governors. However, the scope of this power is limited to setting minimum borrowing rates and interest rates on savings accounts.
  • The nation’s financial system is regulated and administered by the Governor and he sets the parameters within which the entire financial system operates.
  • The Governor of the RBI manages foreign trade and payments and also promotes the smooth development and maintenance of the foreign exchange market in India which falls under the Foreign Exchange Management Act 1999.
  • Monitoring sufficient quantities of banknotes and coins in the country and issuing and destroying currency that is not suitable for public circulation.
  • The RBI Commander also monitors the rules and regulations to make them more user-friendly.
  • Through Urban Bank Services, the Governor of the RBI directs and supervises the major cooperative banks.
  • In addition, the Governor of the RBI can also play a role in facilitating and monitoring the flow of credit in small industries, agriculture and agricultural sectors. Responsibility for regulating state cooperative banks, regional agricultural banks, and various local banks.p
All these responsibilities and many more are carried out by the person who holds the position of Governor of the Reserve Bank of India.


The Reserve Bank of India, established by the British government in 1935, is the highest monetary authority in the country. Since its inception, the organization has seen 25 people serve as RBI Trustees. Given below is the list of governors from India’s first governor to date……
RBI Governors Names Time Period 1935-2020
Sir Osborne Smith April 1, 1935 – June 30, 1937
Sir James Braid Taylor July 1, 1937 – February 17, 1943
Sir C.D. Deshmukh August 11, 1943 – June 30, 1949
Sir Bengal Rama Rau July 1, 1949 – January 14, 1957
K.G. Ambegaonkar January 14, 1957 – February 28, 1957
H.V.R Lyengar March 1, 1957 – February 28, 1962
P.C Bhattacharya March 1, 1962 – June 30, 1967
L.K. Jha July 1, 1967 – May 3, 1970
B.N. Adarkar May 4, 1970 – June 15, 1970
S. Jagannathan June 16, 1970 – May 19, 1975
N.C. Sen Gupta May 19, 1975 – August 19, 1975
K.R. Puri August 20, 1975 – May 2, 1977
M. Narasimham May 3, 1977 – November 30, 1977
I.G. Patel December 1, 1977 – September 15, 1982
Manmohan Singh September 16, 1982 – January 14, 1985
Amitav Gosh January 15, 1985 – September 4, 1985
R.N. Malhotra February 4, 1985 – December 22, 1990
S. Vpnldraramanan December 22, 1990 – December 21, 1992
C. Rangarajan December 22, 1992 – November 21, 1997
Bimal Jalan November 22, 1997 – September 6, 2003
Y.V. Reddy September 6, 2003 – September 5, 2008
D. Subbarao September 5, 2008 – September 4, 2013
Raghuram G. Raj an September 4, 2013 – September 4, 2016
Urjit Ravindra Patel September 4, 2016 – December 10,2018
Shaktikanta Das December 12, 2018 – to date
The first Governor of the Reserve Bank of India was Sir Osborn Smith, on the other hand, the first Indian Governor of the Reserve Bank of India was C.D. Deshmukh. Shaktikanta Das is the present RBI Governor, appointed for a period of three years.

Longest and Shortest Term Governors:

  • The person who served as RBI Governor for the longest time was Benegal Rama Rao. He worked for 7 years from July 1, 1949, until January 14, 1957.
  • Amitabh Ghosh served as RBI Commander for the shortest time, only for 20 days from 15 January 1985 to 4 February 1985.

Who is the the first governor of India?

Sir Osborne Smith April 1, 1935 – June 30, 1937

Who appointed the governor of India?

The central government has the power to appoint Governors and Deputy Governors to the Reserve Bank of India.

What is the salary of the RBI governor?

The governor salary is 2.50000₹/ month at present time, and basic pay is 90,000/-.

How many governors have been there till now?

A total of 25 governors.

Who is the current governor of RBI?

Shaktikanta Das -December 12, 2018 – to date

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