Banerjee is a professor at the US' Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). He and his wife Esther Duflo, winners of this year's Nobel Prize for Economics, are currently touring India to promote their new book 'Good Economics for Hard Times Better Answers to Our Biggest Problems'.
However, some BJP leaders, including some Cabinet ministers, have been critical of Banerjee's work. Addressing a press conference in Pune last week, Railways and Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal said Banerjee had "a Left-leaning mindset" and that his views had been rejected by India.
Ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, Banerjee was instrumental in framing Congress' Nyuntam Aay Yojana (NYAY) or minimum income guarantee scheme. The party was routed in the polls.