Vishwa Mohan,TNN | Jul 23, 2015, 06.02 PM IST
“Mathur, currently director general of the Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE), will take up his new responsibilities as soon as he is in a position to do so, subsequent to being relieved from his current responsibilities by the government of India after a brief period of transition”, said the Teri while announcing appointment of its new chief.
The move comes as many existing employees of the institution strongly resented Pachauri’s decision to resume his work as its chief this week after getting a court order for the same on last Friday. Employees of Teri — the institution involved in research on energy, environment and sustainable development issues — are learned to have also flagged their concerns to the governing council which has many prominent names as its members.
The governing council, headed by astrophysicist BV Sreekantan, subsequently met in Bengaluru on Thursday and decided to appoint Mathur as the new chief of the Teri by replacing Pachauri. The council has 10 members including HDFC chairman Deepak Parekh, Naina Lal Kidwai of the HSBC, Kiran Mazumdar Shaw of Biocon and the ministry of earth science secretary Shailesh Nayak.
A case of sexual harassment was registered against 74-year-old Pachauri by the Delhi Police after it received a complaint from a woman employee of the Teri in February. Though the court had granted him anticipatory bail, he was restrained from entering his office premises and contacting officials at the institution.
Thereafter, Pachauri — the then chairman of the UN’s intergovernmental panel on climate change (IPCC) — had to proceed on leave, pending police investigation against him.
He was, however, on Friday allowed by a Delhi court to enter his office premises except the head office here and a branch in Gurgaon.
Pachauri’s removal from Teri has come nearly five months after his resignation from the IPCC as its chief and also as one of the members of the Prime Minister’s council on climate change — a body which advices the government of INdia for all issues relating to adaptation and mitigation measures in the country to deal with the challenges posed by global warming.
The Teri in its statement on Thursday said that the governing council during its meeting in Bengaluru also considered the question of any action that could be taken on the report of Teri’s internal complaints committee on the issue of alleged sexual harassment.
“Action on this report has been stayed by the court, which ruled ‘the operation of the report of the internal complaints committee shall remain stayed.’ This judgment of May 29, 2015 also stated ‘the principles of natural justice have not been followed at all by the said committee, contrary to rules.’ The governing council of Teri respects all court proceedings and abides by its direction,” the statement said.
The governing council also observed that the issue of succession to the current leadership of Teri was first discussed in detail by the GC meeting held in Mumbai in September, 2014.
Subsequently, a well-known search firm was entrusted with the task of carrying out a search of candidates for the position, which they performed pro bono and provided the governing council with a slate of candidates shortlisted by them.
A further search was carried out involving all the members of the governing council, who interacted individually with several eligible candidates and evaluated senior staff currently working at Teri as well as those who had extensive experience of working in this organization.
“The decision to appoint Ajay Mathur is, therefore, the culmination of an extensive search process and an intensive evaluation of candidates from across the globe,” the statement said.
It said that Pachauri has led and built Teri over the last 34 years from a concept to a major, financially autonomous, professionally dynamic organization on the global stage.
“All efforts will be made to aid and assist Ajay Mathur in a smooth and expeditious transition as the latter assumes responsibility as Teri’s new chief executive.
“The governing council is certain that the 1200 persons working for Teri in different parts of the world would welcome this development and extend all their support towards a smooth transition and ensuring that this unique Indian organization with a global presence and universal reach attains greater heights in the future,” it said.
Noting that the interests of Teri and its talented staff are paramount, the statement said that the governing council members also expressed deep confidence in their dedication and the leadership of the institute.