Dr Kamlesh Chandra Chakrabarty
(27th June 1952-26th March 2021)
By Ravindra Marathe, former CEO of Bank Of Maharashtra
Barely three months short of his 69th birthday, falling on 27th June 2021, Dr Sahab, as we Barodians fondly called him, shed his corporal shell to keep his appointment with his creator.
When nationalised banks started recruiting specialist (planning) officers, Dr Chakrabarty, with a PhD in statistics and few years of teaching experience at Banaras Hindu University, bagged this cherished post in Bank of Baroda in 1979.
After working in planning department and climbing the corporate ladder to the position of GM, he went to London as Head of UK territory. And during last 19 years, he scaled new peaks of his career as Executive Director of Punjab National Bank, then CMD of Indian Bank, then again CMD of PNB and then the Deputy Governor of Reserve Bank of India till March 2015 and then a retired banker.
He was a man of strong conviction and believed in the trilogy of data, information and knowledge, which used very effectively to reach various positions of prominence. He was a workaholic and working under his leadership was a tough job. He hardly enjoyed any Sunday or holiday as he was always busy completing one project or assignment after the other.
He always insisted upon his colleagues and juniors to become knowledge workers who knew what they were doing and why they were doing what they were doing. Working with him, they also understood real meaning of merit, professionalism, recommendation, bullet points, birds eye view etc.
As he was heading the planning department of the bank, he was preparing the bank’s business plans and also doing the performance review of all zones and regions under the four tier operational set up of the bank having head office, zonal offices, regional offices and branches.
The operational heads, that is zonal and regional managers, were always on the receiving end and the joke in those days used to be either you accept the target given by Dr Sahab or become his target.
Because of his strong analytical skills and burning desire to shape the organisation through meticulous planning, he had carved out a niche for himself. Working under him, the officers got immense exposure to corporate planning, data analytics, profitability analysis, risk management and policy analysis,
As he believed in creating his own demand, he always loved to take up new assignments, at times even beyond his jurisdiction. He was part of and later on head of a large number of committees within and outside bank on a variety of subjects in the banking industry. He always believed in taking things or projects to their logical conclusion which demanded lot of patience and perseverance which indeed he possessed in great measure. He was a man of strong logic and reasoning and with a backup of statistical data he would not easily let go of any argument once taken up.
He was one such a kind of specialist (planning) officer who was equally or more successful than a generalist officer in the field. As General Manager (Risk Management and Treasury) he made immense contribution to the bank. During his tenure bank successfully set up integrated treasury operations combining domestic and overseas treasury operations. His tenure as head of bank’s UK territory where he managed multifarious tasks of branch operations, treasury operations, offshore banking and HR speaks volumes of his calibre and capabilities.
He was a kind-hearted person and always cared for even the last man in the hierarchy of the organisation. He left his indelible mark on whatever he handled. Dr Sahab will always be remembered by me and many of his colleagues and juniors as a successful banker and a great human being.
May his soul rest in peace.
Om Shanti 🙏🙏🙏