Mayank Ashar, managing director and CEO at Cairn India, which operates the country’s biggest on-land oilfield, has quit the firm citing “personal reasons”.
Company sources said that he did not want to continue after his two-year tenure that ends this month and will step down from June 5. Chief financial officer Sudhir Mathur will be acting CEO, the company said. Ashar had joined Cairn in May 2014 taking over from P Elango, then interim CEO.
The 60-year-old executive’s exit from the Vedanta Group company comes at a time the oil explorer has been performing poorly following the collapse in crude oil prices. Ashar has been trying to get the lease for the Barmer oil and gas block extended by another 10 years beyond 2020.
Cairn has dragged the petroleum ministry to court citing delays in decisions on the extension of the lease for the Barmer asset. A merger between Vedanta and Cairn India was announced in June last year.
In the last two years, the Cairn India stock has lost more than 60 per cent of its value; in January, it fell to a life-time low of Rs 110. Cairn India also drew flak from investors after it lent a group company $1.25 billion in May 2014; the tenure of the loan was recently extended for two years. The company claims said the extension is “on arm’s length”. FE