Who will lead GAIL as it prepares for break-up

Vol 22, PW 22 (22 Aug 19) People & Policy

Fears are growing at GAIL that an outsider will be appointed as new company chairman to manage its imminent break-up into separate marketing and transmission companies.

"Unlike a GAIL candidate who has risen through the ranks steeped in our culture an outsider will not have any emotional attachment to the company," warns a company source. "He or she will dispassionately break up the company however the government wants."

Anyone interested in the position has until September 23 to apply after the PESB scrapped the earlier process when BC Tripathi failed to secure a six-month extension and stepped down on July 31. Conversely this is good news for candidates who might not have been eligible before as the date of the vacancy has now moved forward six months.

Among them is director finance Anjani Kumar Tiwari who retires on November 30, 2021; Mahanagar Gas MD Sanjib Datta who retires on December 31, 2022; VN Datt, in corporate planning, who retires on February 28, 2022; GAIL Gas chief AK Jana who retires on March 31, 2022; MV Ravi Someshwarudu, ED petrochemicals, who retires on December 31, 2022; and ED human resources Amar Nath Pandey, who retires on July 31, 2021. According to news reports, the government has set a disinvestment target of Rs90,000cr ($12.6bn) for 2019-20 of which a key component is the splitting up of GAIL into two companies, one of them likely to be sold.