Indrajit Coomaraswamy

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Indrajit Coomaraswamy
இந்திரஜித் குமாரசுவாமி
ඉන්ද්‍රජිත් කුමාරස්වාමි
Governor of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka
In office
2 July 2016 – 20 December 2019
Preceded byArjuna Mahendran
Succeeded byW. D. Lakshman
Personal details
Born (1950-04-03) 3 April 1950 (age 74)
Colombo, Ceylon
NationalitySri Lankan/British
SpouseTara de Fonseka
ChildrenImran, Arjun
Parent(s)Rajendra Coomaraswamy (father)
Wijeyamani (mother)
RelativesRadhika Coomaraswamy (sister)
Alma mater

Deshamanya Indrajit Coomaraswamy (Tamil: இந்திரஜித் குமாரசுவாமி, Sinhala: ඉන්ද්‍රජිත් කුමාරස්වාමි; born 3 April 1950) is a Sri Lankan economist. He served as the 14th Governor of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka.[1][2]

Early life and family[edit]

Coomaraswamy was born on 3 April 1950 in Colombo, Ceylon.[3][4] He was the son of civil servant Rajendra Coomaraswamy (Roving Raju) and Wijeyamani.[5][6][7] His paternal grandfather C. Coomaraswamy was a civil servant and his maternal grandfather S. K. Wijeyaratnam was chairman of Negombo Urban Council.[5][7][8] He has one sister, Radhika.[5][6] Coomaraswamy was educated at Royal College, Colombo and at Harrow School in England.[7][9][10] He was captain of Royal's primary cricket team.[8] He was captain of Harrow's cricket team from 1967 to 1968 and also played rugby for the school for three years.[4][11]

After school he went to Emmanuel College, Cambridge, from where he received BA (Hons) and MA degrees.[7][9][12] He played two matches of first-class cricket for Cambridge University Cricket Club, one in 1971 and one in 1972.[3][13] He then proceeded to the University of Sussex from where he obtained a DPhil degree.[7][9][12]

Coomaraswamy is married to Tara de Fonseka.[13] They have two sons – Imran and Arjun.[13] Coomaraswamy is a Sri Lankan Tamil.


Coomaraswamy joined the Central Bank of Sri Lanka in 1973, working as a staff officer in its Economic Research, Statistics and Bank Supervision divisions until 1989.[7][9][13][14] He was seconded to the Ministry of Finance and Planning between 1981 and 1989 to provide advice on macroeconomic issues and structural reforms.[7][9][13][14][15] He worked at the Commonwealth Secretariat from 1990 to 2008, holding various posts including Chief Officer, Economics in the International Finance and Markets Section; Director of the Economic Affairs Division; and Deputy-Director of the Secretary-General's Office.[7][9][13][14] He was an advisor to Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and Project Minister of Economic Reforms, Science and Technology Milinda Moragoda between 2001 and 2002.[15]

Coomaraswamy rejoined the Commonwealth Secretariat in 2010 as Interim Director of its Social Transformation Programme Division.[7][9][13][14] He was special advisor to the controversial Galleon Group hedge fund.[14] He was director of a British company called Galleon Research Services Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of Galleon International Management LLC.[16][17] He was appointed as a non-executive director of John Keells Holdings PLC in February 2011.[13][18] He was appointed as a director of Tokyo Cement Group in March 2011.[13][15][19] He worked briefly for Hatton National Bank and was a director of SEEDS (Guarantee) Limited.[12][15][20] He was a member of the University of Sri Jayewardenepura's Board of Study (Public Administration) and a director of Nawaloka College of Higher Studies.[21][22] He was later a senior advisor to Minister of Development Strategies and International Trade Malik Samarawickrama.[23][24]

Coomaraswamy was appointed Governor of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka in July 2016, replacing Arjuna Mahendran whose tenure was mired by allegations of corruption.[10][25][26] He resigned from the position in December 2019.[27]

Sports career[edit]

Coomaraswamy played rugby for Ceylonese Rugby & Football Club and captained the national team in the 1974 Rugby Asiad.[8][11][13] He also played cricket for the Tamil Union Cricket and Athletic Club.[8][11][13]


  1. ^ Ondaatjie, Anusha (2 July 2016). "Sri Lanka Names Economist Coomaraswamy as Central Bank Chief". Bloomberg Markets.
  2. ^ "Dr. Coomaraswamy new Central Bank Governor". Sri Lanka Guardian. 2 July 2016.
  3. ^ a b "Indrajit Coomaraswamy". ESPNcricinfo.
  4. ^ a b "Indrajit Coomaraswamy". The Cricketer. Archived from the original on 17 August 2016. Retrieved 3 July 2016.
  5. ^ a b c Arumugam, S. (1997). Dictionary of Biography of the Tamils of Ceylon (PDF). p. 43.
  6. ^ a b Weerakoon, Bradman (31 July 2005). "Remembering Raju Coomaraswamy". The Island.
  7. ^ a b c d e f g h i Balachandran, P. K. (2 July 2016). "Coomaraswamy is compromise choice for Lankan Central Bank Governorship". The New Indian Express. Archived from the original on 3 July 2016.
  8. ^ a b c d Ladduwahetty, Ravi (13 December 2012). "Dr Manmohan Singh was committed to non-interference with Asian economies". The Island.
  9. ^ a b c d e f g "Dr. Indrajit Coomaraswamy new Central Bank Governor". Daily News. 2 July 2016.
  10. ^ a b Ramakrishnan, T. (2 July 2016). "Indrajit Coomaraswamy new Governor of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka". The Hindu.
  11. ^ a b c Wijesekera, Bernie (4 September 2005). "Indrajith still a humble soul". The Sunday Times.
  12. ^ a b c "Dr. Indrajit Coomaraswamy joins SEEDS Board". Daily FT. 8 December 2011.
  13. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k David, Anusha (19 March 2015). "Indrajit Coomaraswamy".
  14. ^ a b c d e "Interview with Indrajit Coomaraswamy". Commonwealth Oral Histories. 29 June 2015.
  15. ^ a b c d "Dr. Indrajit Coomaraswamy appointed to Tokyo Cement Board". Daily FT. 1 April 2011.
  16. ^ "Indrajit Coomaraswamy". Companies House.
  17. ^ "Coomaraswamy replaces Mahendran but other headaches remain". Sunday Island. 3 July 2016.
  18. ^ "Leadership". Leadership. John Keells Group. Archived from the original on 31 December 2010.
  19. ^ "Board of Directors". Tokyo Cement Group.
  20. ^ "Dr Commaraswamy appointed to Tokyo Cement board". The Island. 6 April 2011.
  21. ^ "University Administration". University of Sri Jayewardenepura. Archived from the original on 11 July 2016. Retrieved 3 July 2016.
  22. ^ "About Us". Nawaloka College of Higher Studies.
  23. ^ "Lessons on investment from S'pore HC". The Nation. 25 February 2016.
  24. ^ Perera, Quintus (28 February 2016). "Resurgence in Sri Lanka's economy soon". The Sunday Times.
  25. ^ Sirilal, Ranga; Aneez, Shihar (2 July 2016). "Sri Lanka appoints ex-central banker Coomaraswamy as new central bank chief". Reuters.
  26. ^ "Dr. Indrajit Coomaraswamy appointed Central Bank Governor". 2 July 2016.
  27. ^ "Sri Lanka's Central Bank Governor to leave his post in December". Lanka Business Online. 25 November 2019. Retrieved 27 November 2023.