G.V.K. Reddy to help EMRI, brainchild of Satyam Raju

Wednesday, 27 May 2009, 06:10 Hrs
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Hyderabad: Eminent industrialist G.V.K. Reddy has been unanimously elected chairman of Emergency Management Research Institute (EMRI), a brainchild of disgraced founder and former chairman of Satyam Computer Services B. Ramalinga Raju.

The governing body of EMRI late Tuesday elected him after Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy requested the chairman of GVK Group of Industries to help support EMRI, which runs the highly-successful 108 ambulance service in 11 states.

G.V.K. Reddy has agreed to support EMRI and accepted the invitation, said a statement issued by EMRI late Tuesday.

The non-profit organisation, launched by Raju and his family members in 2005, is currently operating 108 free ambulance service in Andhra Pradesh and 10 other states.

The body, which has 12,000 employees in 11 states, is operating 1,650 ambulances.

G.V.K. Reddy becomes chairman five months after a 78 billion fraud in Satyam dealt a blow to the body and led to the resignation of several eminent people from the board, including former president A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, who quit as chairman emeritus.

"Mr.G.V.K. Reddy, while accepting the invitation, stated that his wish in life is to do the best and be second to none. He believes in team work and he wants the name and fame of EMRI to be strengthened further," said the statement.

GVK Group has also agreed to bear five percent of the operational cost of EMRI. The rest of the expenditure is borne by the Andhra Pradesh government in the state under a memorandum of understanding signed last year. The body has similar understandings with respective governments in 10 other states.

EMRI officials had recently said that they were looking for corporates and donors to replace the Raju family to bear five percent of the cost or 1 billion (100 crore) for the operational costs and managerial salaries across the country.

Ramalinga Raju had quit as chairman of EMRI Jan 6, the day he also quit as chairman of Satyam while confessing to the massive accounting fraud in the IT bellwether.

Chief Minister Rajasekhara Reddy, meanwhile, reviewed the functioning of EMRI and asked its managers to make it transparent like the Chief Minister's Relief Fund and Rajiv Arogyasri, the community health insurance scheme.

He asked EMRI officials to create a new website so that the activities of 108 services could be uploaded every day. He suggested that every trip that 108 ambulances make should be uploaded on the website.

Officials informed him that there were 802 ambulances and 752 were operating across the state. These ambulances had attended to 27,51,620 emergencies so far.

Raju and his family members contributed 340 million (34 crore) to EMRI in 2005. With interest, it became 370 million (37 crore) and was spent for operational costs for the next two years.

EMRI is also looking for a guarantor to replace Raju, who had given personal guarantee for a term loan of 430 million (43 crore) taken by EMRI from Axis Bank in 2007.
Source: IANS
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