Yoga Guru Baba Ramdev’s Patanjali has emerged as one of the most popular brands in the country, and is showing signs of expanding further.
However, its employees are not enjoying the perks of its huge profits.
SK Patra, former CEO of Patanjali feels that the company believes its employees are doing a ‘seva’ (voluntary service) and can work without being paid.
“Patanjali pays 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…” Patra told Mint.
An IIT and IIM alumnus, Patra, said that he does not wish to do ‘seva’ as Ramdev claimed. He demands payment for the work he was doing.
“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”, he adds.
Patra said that he left the company as there were differences in their words and actions.
“I was also seeing the distance between their words and their actions and it troubled me. Eventually, it became too much. So I left.”