news Thursday, July 23, 2015 - 05:30
  As a cover-up, this is a professional job.    While earlier media reports (including ours) suggested that R.K. Pachauri was sacked by the Governing Council (GC) of The Energy Research and Resources Institute (TERI), a  press release by the GC  later leaves little doubt that getting the man out of his job on the basis of complaints against him was never the intention.    For a start, the press release positions the departure of R.K. Pachauri as a transition in progress. It says this is a succession issue that was on the table since September 2014.  Nowhere have the words ‘suspension’, ‘termination’ or ‘removal’ been used.   “The Governing Council (GC) of TERI at its meeting held in Bangalore today took a decision to appoint Dr. Ajay Mathur, currently Director General of the Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE), Government of India, as the Director General (DG) of TERI.” TERI GC.   It instead waxes eloquent about R.K. Pachauri for building an idea into a dynamic and financially robust organisation over 34 years and begins to build in the transition theory from the word go.   "Dr. Rajendra K. 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." An entire paragraph is devoted to the qualifications of the successor Ajay Mathur and the many talents he will bring to the organization.  “The issue of succession to the current leadership of TERI was first discussed in detail by the GC in its 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… Mmembers of the GC, who interacted individually with several eligible candidates, and evaluated senior staff, currently working at TERI, and those who had extensive experience of working in this organization. The decision to appoint Dr. Ajay Mathur is, therefore, the culmination of an extensive search process and an intensive evaluation of candidates from across the globe.” TERI GC. So Dr Mathur’s selection is a culmination of an extensive process, nothing more, nothing less.    It takes a fair amount of imagination and resources to spin a sexual harassment case in court as a transition phase.    The charges against R.K. Pachauri are not explicitly mentioned.   The only reference is- “The GC also considered the question of any action that could be taken on the report of the Internal Complaints Committee at TERI on the issue of alleged sexual harassment. Action on this report has been stayed by the Court.”   The press statement does not speak about the findings of an internal probe by TERI which said that Pachauri had misused his position. If this is not a crude cover up, what is?    Flickr photo by Kris Krüg for PopTech    
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