New Delhi:

Even as the Banks Board Bureau (BBB) will be interviewing seven senior officials of Life Insurance Corporation(LIC) to select a new chairman for the corporation on Jan 4, .the government on Tuesday appointed LIC's senior-most managing director Hemant Bhargava as the insurer's interim chairman, in place of V K Sharma who retired on Monday.


“The fact that the government didn't appoint a current-in-charge but gave Bhargava the additional charge of the chairmanship of the corporation, indicates that, a regular chairman will be appointed in a short span of time after completing all the official formalities;'' said sources  Irdai.


For the first time, the government had sought vigilance clearances of all the candidiates those who will be facing BBB even before the interviews, a clear departure from the earlier practice where vigilance clearances were sought before the interviews, said the sources.  


After Usha  Sangwan, who has already retired on Sep 30, VK Sharma, chairman, LIC, retired on Dec 31. The rest of the three MDs – Sunita Sharma in March 2019, B Venugopal in May 2019 and Bhargava in July 2019- will to be superannuating in the next seven months..


For the first time, the BBB will be interviewing eight senior officials of the state-owned Life Insurance Corporation(LIC),in the rank of executive directors(ED), on Jan 4,to select the new chairman and one managing director for the corporation


The senior officials, who have been called for the interview, with over two years of residual services and in order of seniority, are- K. Ganesh, ED, Customer Relationship ManagementCRM),  M R Kumar Zonal Manager(ZM), Delhi, Vipin Anand Zonal Manager, Mumbai, TC Suseelkumar, ZM, Hyderabad, MK Gupta ED, Personnel. Raj Kumar CEO, LIC Mutual Fund , HS Sasikumar,  ZM,Bhopal, S Nallakuttalam. 


K Ganesh, MR Kumar and Vipin Anand belong to 1983 batch of LIC while the rest are parts of 1984 batch.Ganesh, the senior most among the eight eligible officials,wouldn't be considered for the post  of LIC chairman, as he doesn't have two years, mandatory for eligibility, by the time post is falling vacant, and will only be competing with others for the post of one MD.

Bhargava was appointed as the MD of LIC in February 2017, the insurer said in a statement. Apart from Bhargava, there are two more MDs of LIC currently.


He was instrumental in completing the design and setting up a separate microinsurance vertical which was LIC's first comprehensive enterprise-wide initiative in financial inclusion space.


He also set up a new joint venture in collaboration with the banking industry, and founded LIC Cards Services Ltd