Subbarao doesn't like being called inflation warrior

Subbarao said it was equally important to save the poor from the impact of high inflation which was nothing but "regressive tax."

Updated: Jun 04, 2013, 17:50 PM IST

New Delhi: His focus on inflation has earned him the sobriquet of "inflation warrior" but RBI Governor D Subbarao doesn't like the term.

"I do not take that as a compliment," he said when asked if he took the term as a compliment or criticism.

But he went on to add that if people had said the Governor and the RBI had got the mix between growth and inflation judiciously and drawn a right balance "I would take it as a compliment".

Subbarao said if people thought that he was an inflation warrior to imply that he was targeting inflation regardless of all other concerns, then that would be misreading of RBI's policy calculations.

He said if inflation was close to double digit then RBI need to be inflation warriors. "People say that (tight monetary policy) is affecting growth. Possibly it is affecting growth because you cannot bring down inflation without sacrificing some growth," he said.

"But that sacrifice is only in the short term. In the medium term, low and steady inflation secures our growth. Only in such a situation, investors and consumer can make informed decision," he added.

Justifying his priority to tackling inflation, the RBI chief said he had to listen to "silent voices" of millions of poor amid vociferous demand from several quarters for interest rate cut to boost sagging industrial production.