The search for NMDC Limited’s chairman is finally closing in. A search-cum-selection committee on Thursday shortlisted Bharat Coking Coal Limited CMD Tapas Kumar Lahiry and SAIL’s Burnpur unit CEO Narendra Kothari from 15 candidates interviewed for the top job.
The country’s biggest iron ore miner has been functioning without a full-time chairman and managing director or CMD ever since its former chief Rana Som superannuated in December 2011.
The committee headed by Planning Commission member Arun Maira on Thursday interviewed 15 candidates for the job and selected two candidates — Lahiry and Kothari. However, a source said the panel has recommended Lahiry as the first choice.
The Maira committee will send its recommendation to the steel ministry which would forward it to the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC) for the final decision within a week’s time.
A senior government official said the steel ministry is not expected to take a divergent view on the committee’s recommendations as the panel was constituted after the ministry opposed the Public Enterprises Selection Board’s choice.
The aspirants included NMDC’s director technical N K Nanda and its director finance S Thiagrajan. The names of Nanda and Thiagrajan in the list had raised many eyebrows as they are accused of alleged irregularities by CVC in awarding contracts for NMDC’s upcoming greenfield project in Chhattisgarh.
Other candidates interviewed on Thursday include MSTC CMD SK Tripathi, Braithwaite & Co CMD SK Rishi, Engineering Projects (India) CMD SPS Bakshi, Rajiv Sharma, additional secretary, Ministry of Home Affairs, Software Technology Parks of India’s DG Omkar Rai and Bird Group of Companies MD Satish Chandra.
Besides Nanda and Thiagrajan other NMDC directors Subimal Bose and Rabindra Singh, company secretary and executive director K Raghavan and executive director business development Atul Bhat were also called for the interview.