Yashwant Sinha Former Finance Minister and Minister of External Affairs of India
Yashwant Sinha is a veteran politician of the country and a very senior leader. He has worked as the Finance Minister and Minister of External Affairs of the Government of India. He was also the Chairman of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Finance, New Delhi, between 2009 and 2014. He has played an integral role in the story of economic reforms of India. It was he who was at the helm when the economy was in the worst crisis, keeping the vigil before the dawn of reforms. Mr Sinha is widely credited for pushing through several major reforms that put the Indian economy on a firm growth trajectory. Among them are lowering of real interest rates, introducing tax deduction for mortgage interest, freeing up the telecommunications sector, helping fund the national highway authority and deregulating the petroleum industry. Mr Sinha is also known for being the first finance minister to break the 53-year-old tradition of presenting the Indian budget at 5:00 pm local time, a practice held over from British Rule days that sought to present the Indian budget at a time convenient to the British Parliament (11:30 am GMT) rather than Indian Parliament. He has written a comprehensive account of his years as the finance minister in a book titled Confessions of a Swadeshi Reformer: My Years as Finance Minister (2007). He is the co-editor of Future of Indian Economy: Past Reforms and Challenges Ahead (2017) and co-author of India Unmade: How the Modi Government Broke the Economy (2018). Recently, he has authored Relentless: An Autobiography (2019).