BS Columnist Tamal Bandyopadhyay wins KLF book award for ‘Pandemonium’

Veteran journalist and Business Standard Columnist Tamal Bandyopadhyay, who writes ‘Banker’s Trust’ column, recently won an award at Kalinga Literary Festival for his book “Pandemonium: The Great Indian Banking Tragedy”.

He won the KLF Business Book of the Year Award 2020-21 along with Maruti chairman R C Bhargava for his book “Getting Competitive: A Practitioner’s Guide for India” and former RBI governor Urjit Patel’s “Overdraft”. During the KLF Annual Program at Bhubaneswar (December 10-12, 2021), KLF Book Awards will be conferred.

“Pandemonium” is touted as a definitive insider story on the rot in India’s banking system – how many promoters easily swapped equity with debt as bank managements looked the other way to protect their balance sheets, until the RBI began waging a war against ballooning bad loans. The same troubles quickly spilled over to India’s mushrooming non-banking financial companies, which were quick to spot the post-demonetisation easy liquidity and banks’ reluctance to lend, prompting them to make the cardinal sin of borrowing short to lend long.

The book incisively showed how powerful bankers such as Chanda Kochhar and Rana Kapoor exposed the soft underbelly of seemingly more efficient and profitable private banks of India.

“A timely and insider look at dramatic forces reshaping banking in Asia’s third-largest economy, this book is a bird’s-eye view of Indian banking and also a fly-on-wall documentary. A must-read to understand contemporary India’s challenges and economic potential,” said a statement from the book’s publisher Roli

The Banker’s Trust column won Bandyopadhyay the Ramnath Goenka Award for Excellence in Journalism (commentary and interpretative writing) for 2017.

Author of five other books, Tamal is widely recognised as a contributor to the Oxford Handbook of the “Indian Economy and Making of New India: Transformation Under Modi Government”. In 2019, LinkedIn named him as one of the ‘most influential voices in India’.

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