GSPC faces harassment charge against SC employee

Vol 23, PW 22 (10 Sep 20) People & Policy

GSPC stands accused of persecuting a former company geophysicist after he raised queries about the company's controversial KG-OSN-2001/3 development.

On August 24 (2020), Dr Biswajit Thander filed a 34-page complaint with Gandhinagar superintendent of police Mayur Chavda alleging mental harassment, threatening behaviour, humiliation, abuse, discrimination, torture and deprivation by senior GSPC personnel. In June (2020), Thander also approached the powerful National Commission for Scheduled Castes (NCSC) which served a notice on GSPC managing director Sanjeev Kumar.

Thander, 39, is a member of the disadvantaged Namasudra community in West Bengal and studied at the Indian School of Mines in Dhanbad. He also holds a doctorate from the PDPU.

But today, Thander is reduced to selling gas connections' door to door' for Gujarat Gas after GSPC transferred him to Ankleshwar in February (2020). He joined GSPC on June 2 (2008), but when it moved him to Gujarat Gas on February 3 (2020), Gujarat Gas ignored his 12 years experience at GSPC and told him to undergo six months probation.

Thander alleges GSPC management victimised him after he raised queries on KG project data used by GSPC in reports to the DGH. Concerned it might "create a serious error in interpretation," Thander informed his teammates and line manager.

"My officer started abusing me and threatened to isolate me from the team and advised me to keep quiet or face the consequences," alleges Thander. "Even the GSPC director (exploration) threatened to transfer me."