Selan headless as Sahasrabudhe told to leave

Vol 19, PW 11 (11 Feb 16) People & Policy

Selan Exploration is without a chief following a decision by the Rohit Kapur-promoted company to abruptly dismiss director technical DP Sahasrabudhe in an effort to cut costs.

Sahasrabudhe, 63, stopped attending the struggling BSE-listed company's office at the Indrora field near Gandhinagar since January 30. He joined Selan on April 1, 2014, two years after retiring from ONGC as executive director.

Friends say Sahasrabudhe will move back to hometown Pune to live out the rest of his retirement. “Sahasrabudhe joined Selan as director (technical)," says a source.

"But in reality he was the acting CEO." When contacted Sahasrabudhe confirmed he was asked to leave by company management.

“Instead of cutting the salaries of four or five employees," he explains, "it's better to go for the big kill!” A geologist and geophysicict, Sahasrabudhe was appointed on a yearly salary of Rs60 lakhs ($88,000) and spent his time working on strategy to increase production at Selan’s five onland Cambay basin fields. But when oil prices dropped below $60/barrel in April 2015, Selan abruptly stopped its eight-well drilling campaign at the 130-sq km Indrora and 36-sq km Bakrol fields.

Drilling is unlikely to resume soon: Brent was trading at $34.69/barrel on February 2. Selan, we hear, won't be looking for a replacement and Sahasrabudh's post will remain vacant until markets improve.