Meet Alka Mittal, the first woman to head oil giant ONGC

Jan 4, 2022

By: Kritti Bhalla

Alka Mittal is the first woman to head ONGC

Dr Alka Mittal became the first woman to head India's largest exploration and production company, Oil and Natural Gas Company (ONGC), after she took over as the chairperson and managing director (CMD) of the company on January 3.

Credit: ONGC

She has been with ONGC for nearly four decades

Dr Mittal is a post graduate in Economics, has an MBA and holds a Doctorate in Commerce and Business Studies. She joined ONGC as a graduate trainee in 1985.

Credit: ONGC

She now replaces Subhash Kumar

Dr Mittal would be replacing incumbent Subhash Kumar who retired on December 31, and India's most valuable public sector firm by market capitalisation was left without a head for 48 hours. Kumar was Director-Finance of ONGC and had been holding the additional post of Chairman and Managing Director since April last year.

Credit: ONGC

ONGC has not had a full time director since March 2021

ONGC has not had a full-time chairman and managing director since former chief Shashi Shanker retired on March 31, 2021.Kumar was appointed to the position as he was the senior most member and he retired as well. Now, Dr Mittal has been given the charge as she was the senior most person on the board.

Credit: Twitter

She will hold this position for six months

She will hold the post for six months or until a regular appointment for the position is announced, whichever is earlier.

Credit: ONGC

Second woman in the country to lead an oil company

Dr Mittal is the second woman in the country to lead an oil company after Nishi Vasudev, who served as the chairperson and managing director of Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited between 2014 and 2016.

Credit: BCCL

Dr Mittal was also the first one to have a full-time directorship

Dr Mittal was the first woman to hold the charge of a full-time director in ONGC’s history, after she took up the position of director of Human Resources (HR) in 2018. She is also on the board of ONGC Mangalore Petrochemicals Limited (OMPL) as ONGC nominee Director since August 2015.

Credit: ONGC

Skill development is her forte

Prior to joining as the Director of HR, Dr Mittal held the post of chief skill development (CSD) of the company. During the tenure, she also implemented the National Apprenticeship Promotion Scheme (NAPS) at the exploration and production company and engaged more than 5,000 apprentices across all work centres.

Credit: ONGC

Dr Mittal has been part of ONGC’s CSR initiatives

She has previously headed Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives at Corporate Office and took up major CSR projects across India. She has also led HR functions and was also the Head of Corporate Communications of ONGC during 2009.

Credit: ONGC

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