DJ Pandian hands over energy to L. Chuaungo

Vol 18, PW 1 (28 Aug 14) People & Policy

Gujarat energy secretary DJ Pandian won’t be moving to Delhi after all - at least not before his retirement in May next year (2015).

Late on August 25 evening some 26 senior IAS officers in Gujarat were transferred, including Pandian who handed over the energy portfolio to L. Chuaungo while retaining his post heading the industries and mines department.

Chuaungo, 53, is from Mizoram and was previously principal secretary (expenditure) in the finance department. He joined the IAS in 1987 from Gujarat.

Pandian was widely expected to move to Delhi to help the new PM implement the ‘Gujarat Model’ across India. “What will I do there?” Pandian questioned with his characteristic smile when speaking to PETROWATCH at his Gandhinagar office.

“I hardly have nine months left! Maybe I’ll go to Delhi after I retire?” Pandian will still play a key role in ensuring the success of the next Vibrant Gujarat investor summit, scheduled for January 2015 - the first time held without Modi as chief minister. He will also retain the role of vice-chairman and managing director of Gujarat Mineral Development Corporation (GMDC).

Pandian is frequently consulted by joint secretaries in the oil ministry or chairmen and managers of state-owned oil companies - keen to exploit his understanding of how Modi’s mind works.