Former chief of the inter-governmental panel on climate change RK Pachauri is likely to lose ‘operational control’ over The Energy and Resources Institute (Teri) as director-general of the Bureau of Energy Efficiency Ajay Mathur takes over as its head. Mathur is expected to join Teri as its new director-general next week.
TERI’s governing council has accepted Mathur’s condition for joining that he should have full operational control over the institute with no interference from Pachauri in its day-to-day functioning, sources said.
This was apparently a reason for the delay in Mathur joining as director-general replacing Pachauri, who headed the institute for more than two decades.
Mathur was appointed the director-general in June 2015 after a female researcher accused Pachauri of sexual harassment, a charge the former co-chair of the inter-governmental body on climate change denied. The researcher subsequently resigned, accusing the top bosses in the institute of harassing her, a charge denied by TERI. Initially, the technocrat was expected to join Teri in three months but the government asked him to continue till the Paris climate conference, where he was designated as the India’s chief spokesperson.
In an email to Hindustan Times in December 2015, Teri announced that Mathur would join the institute on January 5, 2016. That did not happen as the institute failed to provide clarity on what Pachauri’s role would be once Mathur joined.
This was a key condition put forth by Mathur for joining as Pachauri’s contract did not have a termination clause, meaning he would continue to be part of Teri till his contract expired. “Dr Mathur will not like any interference in day-to-day running of the institute,” a person associated with the developments said.
The governing council has now decided to re-designate Pachauri as executive vice-chairman, having no role in the daily functioning of the institute, sources said.