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Ex-CEO claims Baba Ramdev wanted Patanjali employees to work for ‘free’

NEW DELHI: Yoga Guru Baba Ramdev’s Patanjali Ayurved clocked Rs 10,561 crore revenues for FY17 but it appears that the benefits of the sales are not reaching the people who made it possible.

A former CEO of the Patanjali Ayurved and Patajali Food Park alleges that the company believes its employees are doing a ‘seva’ and can work without being paid.

SK Patra, in an exclusive interview to The Mint daily told that the firm pays less in name of ‘seva'(voluntary service).

“Patanjali pay very little to the people who work for them. Babaji (Baba Ramdev) calls it ‘seva’. For instance, I was doing two jobs there—at Patanjali Ayurved and Patanjali Food Park. They had promised to pay for both. But he would announce to everyone that ‘Patraji has come to do seva. Right now he is drawing salary, but soon, he won’t even take that…’,” he was quoted as saying.

The former CEO, an alumnus of the IIT-Kharagpur and IIM Ahmedabad used to argue when Baba Ramdev announced to everyone that “Patraji has come to do seva. Right now he is drawing salary, but soon, he won’t even take that…”

“I used to respond, “No, I want my money.”… I said I don’t need it for myself. I have a family. I need money for my family, to support them and my relatives. Then Babaji relented and gave me a salary for one of the two jobs that I was performing. But basically his argument was — I have to offer free seva to his host of companies.”

Under his watch from 2011 to 2014, the company’s sales grew from Rs.317 crore to Rs.2,500 crore.

He left the company over irrevocable differences with the management.

“I was also seeing the distance between their words and their actions and it troubled me. Eventually, it became too much. So I left.”