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Jan 29, 2011, 01.19 PM IST | Source: CNBC-TV18

UK Sinha appointed new SEBI chairman

UTI chief UK Sinha has been appointed as the new SEBI chairman, reports CNBC-TV18. Sources say a formal decision had been taken earlier today.

UTI chief UK Sinha has been appointed as the new SEBI chairman, reports CNBC-TV18. According to government sources a formal decision had been taken earlier today.

Sinha, an former IAS officer of Bihar cadre (1976 batch), had worked in Ministry of Finance as the Joint Secretary, in-charge of capital markets, external commercial borrowings, banking and currency and coins.

Here is a verbatim transcript of Siddharth Zarabi’s comments on CNBC-TV18. Also see the accompanying video.

It is a done deal. We have confirmed from senior finance ministry officials that a decision—the formal order which is taken at the highest level has been taken. Mr UK Sinha has been appointed the new Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Board of India with five year tenure. Sinha was in the IAS while his last posting in the ministry was as Joint Secretary of the capital markets division—a crucial division in the finance ministry in the department of economic affairs many years back. He is 59 years old so he has a five-year tenure essentially till the age of 64. He takes over from CB Bhave—very soon CB Bhave’s tenure is coming to an end. So effectively beginning February Sinha will be the new SEBI Chairman.

Clearly, this is sort of a second time lucky event for Mr Sinha, he was earlier in the race for the SEBI chairperson’s job but at that point of time a last minute decision at the level of the government saw CB Bhave get that position. He is currently the chairman and managing director of UTIs asset management company. If you look at Sinha’s track record in terms of being appointed as the securities market regulator he is perhaps one of the most qualified people that are around to be eligible for this post and to be appointed for this.

The run up to this selection saw several people throw in their hats into the ring including a former top banker of the government, senior serving secretary level officer of the government of India but clearly when you look at Mr Sinha’s credentials remember he was the joint secretary for capital markets which is a key posting when it comes to formulation of capital markets policy as far as North Block and the government of India is concerned. He has exposure subsequent to that in Bombay through the position that he currently holds.

He has authored for the government, for the finance ministry some while back sort of reformed report on the way forward for capital market s and clearly given both his personality his style of operations, perhaps one of the most suited, most experienced people to be appointed to this position.

Clearly, while the expectation and the decision at the level of the search and selection committee headed by Cabinet Secretary had been taken in December. The formal orders have now come and decision has been taken. We don’t know whether the formal orders have been physically served on him but clearly from what we learn from the finance ministry it will now be Mr Sinha’s tenure at the SEBI for the next five years.

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