Gujarat Gas starts recruiting for top positions

Vol 24, PW 19 (12 Aug 21) People & Policy

Gujarat State Petronet-controlled Gujarat Gas has been without a CEO for more than a year, but that could soon change.

This report learns the company has been interviewing candidates for CEO, operations head, and marketing head for at least two months. Still unclear is who will be appointed CEO, a position vacant since its former chief Nitin Patil was moved to GSPL India Transco (GITL) in February (2020).

Angry at the demotion, Patil soon resigned as the move involved handling a much smaller portfolio. But Gujarat Gas has finalised Torrent Gas's national CNG head Yogiraj Navathe to join its operations team.

Navathe resigned from Torrent on August 10 (2021) and is expected to join the Gujarat Gas corporate office in Ahmedabad on August 16 (2021). A year earlier, on August 1 (2020), Navathe had left Adani Gas after spending 17 years there to join Torrent Gas.

A source confirms that Navathe appeared for an interview at Gujarat Gas but declined further comment. Still unclear is what Navathe's exact role at Gujarat Gas will be.

Some say he will have the designation "operations head," but they do not know whether he will be operations head for one of the company's regions or the entire country. It's possible Navathe's role might involve supervising, replacing or taking workload away from three operations heads in charge of different regions: Alkesh Desai, Sanjay Ramji and Dipen Chauhan.

Or maybe he will step into the shoes of country operations head Nitin Mehta, who is set to retire in August (2022). If that is the case, he might have to work under Mehta for a year in training until Mehta steps down.

One industry source speculates that Navathe will get the title 'chief operations officer', but this could not be confirmed. Navathe did not return calls.