As the Chairman’s post for Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA) will fall vacant on February 21, 2018, the Government has already started hunting for the coveted post. The Finance Ministry has received applications from public sector insurance firms as well as top bureaucrats as the last date to apply for the post ended on December 27, 2017.
According to sources from the Finance Ministry, names of the applicants include most of serving heads of the state-owned insurance firms, whereas a few of them are top bureaucrats who have also been reported to have applied for the key position. IRDAI’s serving Chairman TS Vijayan will demit office in the third week of next month after completing his five-year terms.
“It is learnt that some big guys such VK Sharma, Chairman, Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) and G Srinivasan, CMD, New India Assurance are among the insurers who have applied for the post,” said the sources. Besides, the other insurers, it added, include K Sanath Kumar, CMD, National Insurance, Hemant Bhargava, MD, LIC, Sunita Sharma, MD, LIC, B Venugopal, MD, LIC, Rajesh Kandwal, CEO & Managing director, LIC, Bahrain. Nilesh Sathe, member (life), IRDA, is also in the fray. Sources further said that several serving and retired bureaucrats, including Anjuly Chib Duggal, former Secretary in the Department of Financial Services of the Finance Ministry, have become strong contenders for the top IRDAI post. The buzz is also doing the round that this time, the Government may also consider a person from the bureaucratic circle for the post.
Vijayan was appointed in 2013 as the then Finance Minister P Chidambaram had strongly recommended for an insurance professional over bureaucrats to lead the industry into growth path.
Cabinet Secretary PK Sinha heads the committee while Additional Principal Cecretary to the Prime Minister PK Mishra – a permanent Government nominee in the panel- Rajiv Kumar, Secretary, Department of Financial Services and Ajay Mittal, Secretary, Department of Personnel and Training along with Bimal N Patel from Gujarat National Law University are other members on the panel. According to the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA) Act, 1999, the chairperson of the authority will hold office for a term of five years, and is entitled to a consolidated salary of Rs 4.5 lakh per month without housing and car facilities.
A notification issued by the Department of Financial Services says that an applicant should have at least 30 years of work experience, and he/she should have worked as Secretary to the Government of India or in its equivalent position either at a Central or State institution.
However, the Ministry had amended the initial notification so that the CMDs public sector general insurance companies and MDs and even EDs of LIC who are in the rank of Additional Secretary could apply for the post. The post is also open to the private sector experts who have worked as CEO in a large financial institution.
In November 2017, the Financial Sector Regulatory Appointments Search Committee had interviewed a few candidates to select two members (Life and Finance) of the IRDAI. Some of the senior officials of the insurance industry who had appeared for the interview for the post of member(non-life), IRDAI, are K Sanath Kumar, CMD, National Insurance Company, Suresh Mathur, Executive Director, IRDAI, Segar Sampathkumar, former Director, GIC Re and Vinay Sah, CEO, LIC Housing Finance.
Similarly, among the candidates, PH Kutumbe, Executive Director (Finance and Accounts), LIC, Chief Finance Officer V Chandrasekaran, former Executive Director LIC, Pulla Rao, ED, IRDAI, Ashwin Kumar, former CMD, Dena Bank, were interviewed for the post of member (Finance & Accounts) of IRDAI. source : dailypioneer