THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Dr M. Ayyappan, former chairman and managing director of HLL Lifecare Ltd, has been appointed as adviser to the company. The new CMD Dr Rakesh Kumar Vats, a senior bureaucrat and director-general of Central Government Health Scheme had taken charge on Friday. Recently, the Niti Aayog had recommended HLL Lifecare Ltd for disinvestment. Dr Rakesh Kumar Vats, 58, is at present having the rank of additional secretary in the Union health ministry who belongs to the West Bengal cadre.
The 1986 batch bureaucrat was appointed by the Centre after widespread complaints against mismanagement and inefficiency by the earlier top brass of the mini ratna PSU. Dr Ayyappan had retired as CMD last May and within a month R. P. Khandelwal, who was holding the post of director finance of HLL Lifecare Limited was given the additional charge as CMD. It was during his tenure as CMD in June this year that news broke regarding Department of Disin-vestment and Public Assets Management, under the Union finance ministry forwarding a draft Cabinet note on disinvestment. Company sources told this newspaper that with stiff opposition from employees of HLL Lifecare Ltd and from the Union health ministry itself, the recommendation is yet to materialise.
However, what has not gone down well with a section of the employees is the appointment of Ayyappan as adviser to the company. "This is the first time HLL Lifecare Ltd has come up with a policy to form a new post of adviser to the company which will see Ayyappan returning to his old turf. He is going to be at par with the new CMD which will benefit him to get the same salary as Rakesh Kumar Vats," said a top official of the company to DC. It is reliably learnt that the Centre’s decision to appoint Rakesh was officially informed to HLL employees at its high level meeting of the company officials at its headquarters in Poojappura here on Thursday. However, Dr Ayyappan’s appointment is yet to be made public though, fearing backlash from a section of the company officials.
Khandelwal who was holding the additional charge of CMD has now taken over as the full time director of finance.