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4 independent directors take charge on Antrix board

The board was reconstituted as part of organisational reforms initiated after controversy over the Antrix-Devas deal

For the first time since it was formed over 20 years back, three of Antrix Corporation Ltd.’s prominent corporate old guard are not on its board.
In last year’s overhaul, Tata Sons’ Ratan Tata, Godrej & Boyce’s Jamshyd Godrej and Hyderabad-based MTAR Technologies’ Ravindra Reddy, who have been on the Antrix board since 1992, made way for four new non-ISRO faces. The 12-member board met as recently as December 24, 2013.
The three companies, however, remain suppliers of vital hardware and inputs for the agency’s launch vehicle programme.

ISRO Chairman and Secretary, Department of Space, K. Radhakrishnan told The Hindu recently that new directors were inducted to the reconstituted Antrix board in two phases in 2013. The ISRO/Department of Space nominees came in first in mid-2013 and the neutral or non-ISRO members joined later after a Central government-approved process.
“We now have four new members from outside. We went through a process of selection of these members and got the approval of the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet. The members now have a fixed, three-year tenure,” Mr. Radhakrishnan said.
Antrix, ISRO’s marketing arm, picked as its new neutral directors: Arun Balakrishnan, former Chairman and Managing Director of Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd; Y.S. Mayya, former CMD of Electronics Corporation of India Ltd. under the Department of Atomic Energy; Devang Khakhar, Director of IIT Bombay; and J. Ramachandran of IIM Bangalore.
Eye on the future
The independent directors have got going as heads of new subcommittees on audit, business plan, remuneration and corporate social responsibility. “We have asked them to work out new business areas as we have to look at the future,” Dr. Radhakrishnan, who chairs the ISRO-Antrix Coordination Management Committee, said.
On the change in the non-ISRO guard, he said: “We have to have different perspectives coming into the system.”

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