Musical chairs at ministry in 'babu' re-shuffle

Vol 15, PW 15 (09 Feb 12) People & Policy

Nine oil ministry directors and one joint secretary received new assignments on Tuesday (February 7) after a major reshuffle first forecast by this report last October.

On February 6, ministry joint secretary administration LN Gupta issued order No. 21/2012, re-distributing the work allocations of ministry officials with effect from February 7.

In our last issue, we reported joint secretary Aramane Giridhar, who joined on January 12, was languishing in the ministry’s low-profile marketing division. Yet in a dramatic reversal, the February 6 work order moved Giridhar out of marketing and gave him charge of the high-profile exploration division.

Marketing division responsibility has reverted to joint secretary (international co-operation) Vivek Kumar, as an additional charge. At the director level, Dr.

Neeraj Mittal has taken charge of the ‘vigilance’ portfolio, which means he’ll be handling corruption cases involving state-owned oil companies. Mittal continues to hold the ‘gas pricing’ portfolio, which he got in June 2011 after former ministry director Manu Srivastava completed his five-year Delhi stint.

Mittal joined the civil service in 1992 from Tamil Nadu and holds a PhD in Management Information Systems from Ohio University in the US. Mittal’s previous role handling the pricing and supply of crude oil and petroleum products has gone to Prashant Kumar Singh, also in charge of refineries.

Singh must oversee the pricing of diesel, kerosene and crude oil imports and monitor the functioning of established refineries in addition to the commissioning of new refinery projects. He joined the civil service from Manipur-Tripura in 1993 and moved to the ministry on June 28, 2010.

Singh’s previous portfolio handling internal ministry administration will now be with director Sri Prakash, whose own previous ‘vigilance’ portfolio went to Mittal. Sri Prakash is from Central Civil Services and joined the ministry in November 2006.