Das confirmed as Bhatinda CEO

Vol 11, PW 23 (03 Apr 08) News in Brief

As widely expected, steel tycoon Lakshmi Mittal and JV partner Hindustan Petroleum have formally appointed former joint secretary refineries Prabh Das as first CEO of the proposed 9m t/y Bhatinda refinery in Punjab.

Contacted by this report, Das confirms he took charge as CEO on March 6, the day after the government accepted his resignation. How long is his contract for “I have no fixed tenure,â€‌ says Das.

“I can stay for as long as I want.â€‌ Apurva Chandra from Maharashtra, a former private secretary to previous oil minister Ram Naik, remains front-runner to replace Das but his appointment is still uncertain.

Oil minister and Congress stalwart Murli Deora is believed to oppose Chandra’s arrival at the ministry because he once served under BJP apparatchik Naik. Chandra, however, has the support of Sharad Pawar, arguably the most powerful politician in Maharashtra, and an important minority partner in the coalition government at the centre.

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