Mukesh Ambani snubs Atanu at PDPU convocation

Vol 19, PW 13 (10 Mar 16) People & Policy

No one likes being ignored, or treated like you don't matter, especially if you've just been appointed as the next head of the DGH, a hugely important position in India's oil and gas landscape.

But that's what happened to outgoing GSPC managing director Atanu Chakraborty, who was subjected to the silent treatment at the fourth convocation of the GSPC and Reliance promoted Pandit Deen Dayal Petroleum University (PDPU) in Gandhinagar on March 6. Not one of the speakers mentioned Chakraborty's name in their acknowledgments, even though this was his first public appearance after his appointment as DGH chief was announced on February 24.

Gujarat chief minister Anandiben Patel, energy minister Saurabh Patel, Reliance chairman and PDPU president Mukesh Ambani, James Burkhard, head of oil market research for IHS Energy and DJ Pandian: they all ignored Chakraborty. Ambani in particular mentioned the names of everybody present onstage and even acknowledged PDPU teachers, students and parents - but not a word about Chakraborty.

"Frankly I'm shocked and surprised at this treatment for the new DGH chief," says a senior industry source. "Whatever differences you may have - at public functions protocol must be followed." Worse, when the 1377 students were called on stage one by one to receive their medals and degrees, all the dignitaries stood in front shaking hands.

Chakraborty appeared bored.

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