Subir Raha

28 Aug 1948
1 Feb 2010
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Subir Raha (Bengali: সুবীর রাহা) (28 August 1948 – 1 February 2010) a former Director (HR) of Indian Oil Corporation and ex chairman and MD of Oil and Natural Gas Corporation received global recognition as Energy Executive of the year 2005, from the Petroleum Economist, London,in September 2006.

Born on August 28, 1948, Raha graduated in Electronics & Telecommunications Engineering, specialising in Industrial Electronics from Jadavpur University in 1969, with several prizes including the medal for being the Best All-rounder graduate of the University.

Later he did his MBA with Distinction at the University of Leeds in 1985, specialising in Strategic Marketing. He was also an alumnus of the Administrative Staff College, Henley (1995).

Mr. Raha served as Chairman & Managing Director of Oil and Natural Gas Corporation a Government of India Enterprise, for five years from May 25, 2001.

Under his stewardship ONGC was dramatically transformed, from a sectoral E&P company to an Integrated Energy Major on global scale.

This was achieved through a sustained focus on growth strategies – corporate rejuvenation of structure and processes, aggressive investments in intellectual and physical assets, redevelopment of ageing fields, smart management of costs, taxes and funds, proactive acquisition of hydrocarbon reserves in India and overseas, innovative HRD, state-of-the-art information & control technologies, effective HSE and carbon management, forward integration for value addition, best-in-class corporate pride and image, employee motivation and unwavering stress on ethics and corporate governance.

Raha served (1996–98) on deputation in the Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas, Government of India, as the Head of the Oil Coordination Committee (OCC), the nodal agency for planning, monitoring and control of Oil & Gas business under the Administered Pricing regime. On this assignment, he managed, among other things, national logistics, strategic planning, canalised imports/exports, administered pricing and reform strategy. He conceptualised the Petroleum Federation of India (Petrofed), the Chamber of Commerce for Oil and Gas Industry. He is a founding-member of the Petrotech Society, chartered to promote academics in India’s Oil & Gas Industry.

Raha served IndianOil for over three decades from 1970 to 2001.

He served as Director (HR) (1998–2001), and concurrently, Director in-charge of Business Development, Information Technology and Corporate Communications of Indian Oil Corporation Ltd (IndianOil).

During his years in IndianOil, Mr. Raha handled field and staff assignments in Supply & Distribution, Plant Operations, Engineering, Sales, HR and Marketing. He created several Indian Firsts: networked on-line transaction processing (OLTP) across India (1986–88), real-time automated product terminals (1993–95), and modern Retail Outlets with Convenience Stores & ATM (1995–96). Several of his innovations, especially in Logistics and LPG cooking gas marketing, became Industry standards.

As Director (HR), he set up India’s first in-house MBA programme. He conceptualised and piloted the first global-scale ERP implementation in India.

He created the IndianOil Foundation to protect, preserve and promote the archeological heritage of India.

He set up lubricant blending in Malaysia and retail marketing in Mauritius. He successfully managed privatisation of Lubrizol India Ltd. He was Chairman or Director on several JVs including IndianOil Petronas Ltd.

During 1999-2004, Mr. Raha played a key role in Petronet LNG Ltd. (Director during 1999-2001 and member of the Promoters’ Committee, 2001–2006), a PPP company for initiating LNG business in India.

Subir Raha received several awards for business leadership, including the E&Y India Business Leadership Award as Manager-Entrepreneur of the Year, the SCOPE award for the Best Public Sector CEO, and Sir Jehangir Ghandy Medal for Industrial and Social Peace. Subir Raha completed his Business Studies from Leeds University Business School,Leeds,UK.

He has been a featured speaker in many national and international conferences and investor meets, including Offshore Technology Conference (OTC 2006), Houston and Chatham House, London (2004–05).

Subir Raha died in New Delhi on 1 February 2010 of lung cancer. He is survived by his wife and two children, a daughter and a son

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