Experts queue up to help Pandian do his PhD

Vol 17, PW 3 (05 Sep 13) People & Policy

Most PhD students struggle to find experts to check their thesis.

But most PhD students aren't Gujarat energy secretary DJ Pandian. PETROWATCH learns 21 oil and gas experts came running to help Pandian check his PhD in energy security on August 6 at Nirma University in Ahmedabad.

Among them former DGH director general Avinash Chandra; Kirit Parikh, chairman of Delhi-based Integrated Research and Action for Development; former PNGRB chairman Labanyendu Mansingh; Kapil Garg, MD of Mumbai-based Oilmax; Prosad Dasgupta, former CEO & MD of Petronet-LNG; Sridhar Tambraparni, joint president Adani Gas; and former HOEC managing director Ajit Kapadia. “I was humbled and overwhelmed,” Pandian tells us.

“Nowhere in the country have so many people come together to help one student write an exam.” With so many assembled experts, the occasion turned into a roundtable on India’s energy security.

Oilmax chief Garg criticised exploration delays in India, saying even Nigeria and Romania move faster. He said Oilmax has been arguing with the DGH for four years to reduce its seismic commitment at Gujarat block CB-ONN-2005/9 where 35-sq km sits in Bharuch city.

“In our Romania block which we got around the same time in 2009,” said Garg, “we have already done seismic, completed exploration, found gas, and will put the field on production this year." Former PNGRB chief Mansingh lambasted the oil ministry for rendering the upstream DGH and downstream PNGRB regulatory bodies toothless.