Competition Commission of India names Pattnaik as new head of investigations

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A security guard stands outside the Competition Commission of India (CCI) headquarters in New Delhi. File
| Photo Credit: REUTERS

Competition Commission of India has selected Ansuman Pattnaik as the new head of its investigations unit, bringing in a government official who has overseen investigations of companies such as Alphabet Inc’s Google, two sources said.

He replaces Atul Verma, whose term as director general of investigations at the Competition Commission of India (CCI) ended in November.

Mr. Pattnaik has 28 years of experience working in various positions in the Indian government. He also worked at the CCI during 2014-2019 in its investigations unit and was head of the unit for a brief time.

During his previous stint at CCI, Mr. Pattnaik oversaw investigations into companies like Google for abuse of market power as well as global beer firms for alleged price collusion.

Since 2019, he has been working in India’s income tax department. He will take up his role at the CCI in January, said one of the sources.

Mr. Pattnaik declined to comment. The CCI did not respond to Reuters queries.

Mr. Pattnaik’s LinkedIn profile shows he supervised officers on investigations into price collusion cases and abuse of dominant position by companies, and authorized raids in high-profile cases.

His appointment comes as the CCI is investigating several high-profile global companies for alleged antitrust violations, including Amazon, Walmart’s Flipkart, Google, and liquor giant Pernod Ricard.

In September, the government appointed three new members to oversee cases at the watchdog, including a former government official from the commerce ministry and a former interim compliance officer of WhatsApp.

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