DGH starts work on reforming itself

Vol 9, PW 4 (01 Jun 05) News in Brief

DGH boss VK Sibal has set up an internal team with help from the Indian Institute of Management in Ahmedabad to examine ways in which the DGH can re-model itself as a statutory body with its own independent staff.

Approximately 80% of the DGHs 76 staff is on secondment from ONGC and the other 20% from Oil India. Most are on DGH attachment for five years, but extensions of up to seven or eight years are not uncommon, prompting industry suspicion that the upstream regulator is biased towards the two state-owned explorers.

Such talk, it seems, has now reached the ears of oil minister Mani Shankar Aiyar, who is putting pressure on Sibal to prepare a Cabinet Note, a first step in reform of the DGH. Any change cant happen overnight, reveals a source.

We live in a democracy and in a democracy you need to reach consensus. MPs need to be persuaded and the finance ministry must agree to pay for any change.