New Delhi: Economist Abhijit Sen, a former Planning Commission member and one of the country's foremost experts on rural economy, died on Monday night. He was 72.
"He suffered a heart attack around 11 PM. We rushed him to the hospital, but it was all over by the time we got there," said Dr Pronab Sen, his brother.
In a career spanning more than four decades, Abhijit Sen taught economics at New Delhi's Jawaharlal Nehru University, and held several important government positions including the chair of the Commission of Agricultural Cost and Prices.
He was a member of Planning Commission from 2004 to 2014, when Manmohan Singh was the prime minister.
Sen was also chairman of the Commission for Agricultural Costs & Prices (CACP) in the first Atal Bihari Vajpayee-led NDA government, and authored the report of the High Level Committee on Long Term Grain Policy that was submitted in July 2000.
Born in 1950 in Jamshedpur, Sen was schooled in Sardar Patel Vidyalaya in New Delhi after which he studied physics at St Stephen’s College in Delhi University.
He then moved to economics, completing his Ph.D. from the University of Cambridge. Prior to joining Jawaharlal Nehru University in 1985, he held teaching positions in the Universities of Sussex, Cambridge, Oxford and Essex in the UK.
Apart from his work with the CACP and Planning Commission, Sen’s expertise was regularly tapped by the UNDP, the Food and Agriculture Organisation, the International Fund for Agricultural Development and the Asian Development Bank.
In 2010, he was awarded the Padma Bhushan for public service.