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Published on: Jan. 5, 2022, 8:46 p.m.
Alka Mittal, ONGC’s first woman CMD
  • New leadership

By Business India Editorial

Alka Mittal, who has been appointed as the interim Chairperson and Managing Director of the Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC), is the first woman to hold the post at the Corporation.

Mittal has replaced Subhash Kumar, who retired on 31 December. Mittal will hold office for a period of six months from 1 January or till the appointment of a regular incumbent, whichever is earlier.
 
“The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC) has approved the proposal of the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas for entrustment of additional charge of the post of Chairman and Managing Director (CMD), ONGC to Alka Mittal, Director (HR), ONGC for a period of six months with effect from 1 January, 2022, or till the appointment of a regular incumbent to the post, or until further order, whichever is earliest,” the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) said in an order.
 
ONGC’s last full-time director Shashi Shanker retired from the post on 31 March, 2021 and his replacement was not selected. Thus, on the basis of seniority in the PSU’s board of directors, Subhash Kumar was given the additional charge of chairman and managing director.
 
Who is Alka Mittal?

Mittal broke the proverbial glass ceiling in the Maharatna PSU by becoming the first woman to join the company’s board on 27 November, 2018. She has a post graduate in economics from Dehradun’s MKPPG College and a doctorate in commerce from Jamia Millia Islamia, as per her LinkedIn profile.
 
Women bosses in Indian PSUs

Incidentally, Mittal is not the only woman on the ONGC board of directors as the Public Enterprise Selection Board (PESB) selected Pomila Jaspal as Director (Finance). Jaspal is currently Director (Finance) in ONGC's Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals Ltd (MRPL).
 
The oil and gas sector has two women heading public sector undertakings (PSUs). Alka Mittal is the first-ever woman to head an oil and gas exploration and production company in India whereas Vartika Shukla became the first woman to head an engineering consultancy company, Engineers India Limited (EIL) on 1 September, 2021. Prior to her, Nishi Vasudeva was the first woman to head an oil refiner and fuel marketing company – Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd (HPCL) in 2014.


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