Modi overrules Pradhan in Oil India selection

Vol 19, PW 22 (14 Jul 16) People & Policy

Dharmendra Pradhan usually gets his way as oil ministry boss unless his views conflict with the biggest boss - Narendra Modi.

For the selection of Oil India's next chairman, Modi's opinion has prevailed after orders from the Department of Personnel and Training confirming Utpal Bora's appointment reached oil secretary KD Tripathi at 1.30pm on July 11. "Bora wasn't Pradhan's choice," says a ministry source.

"Pradhan wanted to appoint somebody from the private sector like (ex-Cairn employee) Sunil Bharati." Bora tells us he awaits one more letter confirming his appointment date from the Department of Personnel and Training.

"I expect the order any day," he says. "Once it comes in I will be relieved of my duties at ONGC.

There are a few formalities left." Bora, born on September 25, 1959, has been executive director heading ONGC's Mehsana asset for the past two years.

Before that he was seconded to OVL for two and a half years at its Delhi and Venezuela offices. "I joined ONGC in 1982," he recalls.

"My first posting was in Assam. I've also worked in the Mumbai offshore.

" Bora studied petroleum engineering from ISM Dhanbad in Jharkhand. He has two children: a daughter in Australia and a son working with Accenture in Delhi.

His hobbies are reading, playing cricket and watching movies. "If I can't watch a movie at the cinema due to a lack of time, I download it," he says.