ONGC defends Arun Karle show at OTC in Houston

Vol 17, PW 21 (05 Jun 14) People & Policy

Some people will grumble about anything, especially when it comes to ONGC.

Last month (May) the state-owned explorer was sharply criticised over its choice of ‘Master of Ceremonies’ at an event organised on the sidelines of the prestigious Offshore Technology Conference (OTC) in Houston. ONGC organised an 'India technology meet' on the evening of May 6.

Chaired by director offshore TK Sengupta and attended by around 200 industry representatives, it was meant to attract new technology and service providers. But some were upset that Arun Karle of Mumbai-based oilfield consultancy Askara Enterprises took the podium and conducted the proceedings.

"Why did ONGC choose a ‘vendor’ to introduce it to us at Houston” asks one bemused participant. “Karle is just another ‘vendor’ like us.

Couldn't ONGC get one of its own executives” Another participant adds that ONGC paid for the event and using Karle sent out the wrong message. “Does this mean we must go through Karle to do business with ONGC" he wonders.

A senior ONGC executive responds: “We had no local person in Houston to run around for us so we took Karle’s help to book the hotel (for the event) and conduct the programme. Nobody needs to go through Karle to do business with us.

He has no role in that respect.”