Ajay Kalsi on recruitment drive at Focus Energy

Vol 16, PW 22 (30 May 13) People & Policy

Ajay Kalsi-owned Focus Energy wants to recruit more than 100 people when it has only four blocks in India.

But then billionaire Kalsi always does things differently. Two years ago he bought jack-up Transocean Mercury to work at a single block.

In the past Focus has also been accused of "trial and error" drilling in Rajasthan. This colourful approach now extends to recruitment.

Focus unleashed a colourful recruitment campaign on May 15 in The Times of India for 100 new staff. “What are they up to” questions a senior source at the Pandit Deen Dayal Petroleum University (PDPU) in Gandhinagar.

"Are they just building up a data bank” he asks, “or will they really recruit people” Of the 100 places on offer, Focus needs 40 electrical engineers, 32 geologists, 16 instrumentation engineers, 10 marine and five HSE engineers. When contacted, Focus said the company is always looking for new talent.

“We need people for our Cambay offshore block,” he said. Focus began an 18-well Phase-I exploration campaign in February at shallow water offshore NELP-VI block CB-OSN-2004/1, drilling one well in an onland area.

Focus also needs people to work at pre-NELP block GK-ON/4 in Gujarat and at Rajasthan blocks RJ-ONN-2003/2 and RJ-ON/6. One ambitious engineering graduate complains it is difficult to contact Focus: two of the three numbers on its website, he says, aren't working.

“When I finally managed to speak to the HR manager," we hear, "he had difficulty talking in English and then he refused tell me the stipend.”