Vedanta-Led Cairn India’s CEO, CFO Quit
A security guard stands in front of a sign featuring the Cairn India Ltd. logo in Mumbai, India (Photographer: Adeel Halim/Bloomberg)  

Vedanta-Led Cairn India’s CEO, CFO Quit

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Cairn India Chief Executive Sudhir Mathur resigned from the company, the fourth CEO to quit the firm since it was taken over by billionaire Anil Agarwal’s Vedanta Group seven years back.

Along with Mathur, Pankaj Kalra, the chief financial officer of Cairn India, which is now a part of Vedanta Ltd. after its merger with the parent, has also resigned, sources privy to the development said.

Mathur resigned about a month back and his resignation was made public only last week, the sources said. He is currently serving notice period which is technically up to May-end, but may leave the company by the end of April. Kalra quit a couple of months back.

Prior to these resignations, Suniti Bhat, director (oil and gas) and member executive committee at the company, resigned about six months back which was followed by the firm's chief internal audit and risk assurance director Arup Chakraborty quitting the company.

"Such movements in management are part of natural evolution in any organisation, and are in line with career aspirations and personal priorities of individuals,” said a company spokesperson confirming the resignations. Mathur did not answer phone calls made to seek his comments.

Sources said the company has named Ajay Dixit, who was CEO of aluminum and power divisions of Vedanta, to take over from Mathur in the interim period after his exit. The resignations came within months of Vedanta winning 41 out of the 55 exploration blocks bid out in India's first bid round under open acreage licensing policy.

Some in the industry saw its bids as an attempt to please the establishment as the bid round would have collapsed with state-owned explorers like Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Ltd. and Oil India Ltd. putting limited bids and other private and foreign players staying out of the bid round.

They felt Vedanta had over-committed itself to not so prospective blocks and with a limited team. Mathur is the fourth CEO to have quit the company since Vedanta completed the acquisition of Cairn India in December 2011.

Rahul Dhir, the company's first CEO who oversaw its listing and development of India's biggest oil discovery in Rajasthan, quit the company in August 2012. His successor P Elango resigned in May 2014, while the third CEO Mayank Ashar resigned in May 2016.

Vedanta had bought 58.8 percent stake in Cairn India from British explorer Cairn Energy for $8.67 billion in August 2010 and the acquisition was completed in December 2011.

In April 2017, Cairn India was merged with Vedanta and delisted from the stock exchanges.

Also read: Vedanta Can Be Sued In England By Zambian Citizens, Says U.K. Supreme Court

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