ONGC dir. onshore race throws up 3 favourites

Vol 23, PW 1 (31 Oct 19) People & Policy

Six ONGC and two outside candidates are preparing for interviews to replace director onshore SK Moitra after the PESB narrowed down an initial list of 18 names from ONGC.

All eight will be interviewed on October 31: six from ONGC beginning 10.30am and the two external candidates from 12.30pm. Some ONGC insiders are surprised that not a single reservoir engineer among the six ONGC candidates has been called despite speculation that a reservoir engineer would be best suited to succeed Moitra who retires on June 30 next year (2020).

Some offer an innocent explanation: that the PESB chose the first six names on the ONGC list at random. No doubt chairman Shashi Shanker's opinion will count on the eventual winner's selection but for now observers point to three frontrunners: executive directors Sanjeev Kakran and Anurag Sharma, and group general manager Namit Sharma.

Kakran is an electrical engineer who ranked first on the PESB interview list and on the ONGC list of 18 candidates sent to the PESB. He took charge as ASSAM ASSET manager on August 1 and is the longest serving ONGC employee among all candidates.

Although eligible, Kakran did not apply for the job of director technology and field services where PESB interviews were held on September 16. "He stayed away most likely because he was promised another position (director onshore)," we hear.

"Otherwise he was the most eligible even for that job."