Shakti Kanta Das joined the Indian Administrative Service in Tamilnadu cadre in 1980 and held important positions in the areas of finance, taxation, industries, investment and infrastructure, both in the Central and State Governments. On his superannuation, Das recently retired from service after a distinguished career of 37 years.
As Industries Secretary, Tamil Nadu, he played a major role in transforming Chennai into a manufacturing hub, especially in automobiles and electronics hardware. During his tenure, the State attracted large number of investments from both India and abroad, including many from several global majors.
In Government of India, Das has served in the Ministry of Finance for 9 long years in various capacities. He was associated with the preparation of as many as 8 Union Budgets.
As Revenue Secretary, he played an important role in breaking the stalemate between the Centre and the States on GST, paving the way for amendment to the Constitution of India. He negotiated the Agreement with the Swiss authorities by which the Swiss Government, for the first time, agreed to share information relating to HSBC bank accounts. Das played an important role in renegotiating the Tax Treaty between India and Mauritius. He spearheaded various tax reforms like resolving the retrospective taxation issue, reduction of corporate tax, enactment of the Laws relating to benami transactions and black money held as foreign assets by Indians, etc. As Secretary, Economic Affairs, Das played a very crucial role in key reform measures like FDI liberalization, ADHAAR legislation, reforms in fertilizer, kerosene and LPG subsidies, enactment of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy law, preparation of Laws to regulate Ponzi schemes and to resolve stressed financial firms including banks, amendment to the RBI Act for inflation targeting, etc. It was in his tenure that important budget reforms like merger of the railway budget with the general budget, abolition of the plan and non-plan classifications and advancement of the date of budget presentation were undertaken.
He literally became the face of Government of India during demonetisation and played a very key role in its planning and implementation. He has initiated important measures for promoting digital transactions in India. Das served as India’s Alternate Governor in the World Bank, ADB,NDB and AIIB. He represented India in international fora like the IMF, G20, BRICS, SAARC etc.