Sanjay Gupta is new director exploration and vigilance

Vol 13, PW 5 (13 Aug 09) People & Policy

Explorers take note: on August 6, Sanjay Gupta (left) took charge as director exploration and vigilance, replacing Maninder Singh who completed his five-year term on August 1.

Singh was widely expected to get a three-month extension till October, as the ministry wanted him to stay and help with the delayed NELP-VIII licensing round. But cabinet secretary KM Chandrasekhar turned down the ministry’s proposal for extension to Singh.

Gupta’s appointment orders were issued on August 5 evening, and the next day he was in his new seat. Speaking to PETROWATCH soon after, 42-year-old Gupta said he was new to the exploration sector.

“This is my first day at work,â€‌ he said, “I am still familiarising myself with the job.â€‌ Gupta is no stranger to the oil ministry having worked there since January 2, 2007, when he was appointed director in charge of marketing coordination and state-owned refiner Indian Oil.

“I expect to stay on as director (exploration and vigilance) for the remaining two and a half years of my five year stint in Delhi,â€‌ says Gupta. Unlike most of his colleagues in the ministry, Gupta is not from the elite Indian Administrative Service, but from the less glamorous Indian Revenue Service, which he joined in 1994.

Born in 1966, Gupta is a mechanical engineer and holds a post-graduate degree in production engineering. As director exploration and vigilance, he will directly supervise how all PSCs are implemented.

He will also deal with corruption cases against senior officials in state-owned companies controlled by the oil ministry. Gupta’s immediate superior is joint secretary exploration DN Narasimha Raju.

Replacing Gupta as director marketing coordination and IOC is deputy secretary Anil Kumar Patil, a central secretariat service officer and former personal secretary to personnel and training minister Prithviraj Chauhan. Patil should remain director of marketing coordination and IOC for five years, unless he is transferred early.