Technology and Field Services

Opposing the plea, Additional Solicitor Genral Sanjay Jain told the court that the BJP was different from the government, and as Patra was not a part of the government, he could be appointed as an Independent Director.The court heard the arguments of central government and an NGO, which has filed the petition against Patras appointment, and said before seeking Centres response through an affidavit, it would pass an order on November 8 whether the petition is maintainable.IANSgt/nir/vmPost Source: Ians feed.New Delhi, Nov 1 (IANS) The Delhi High Court on Wednesday fixed November 8 for passing an order on the maintainability of a plea challenging the appointment of BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra as an Independent Director on the board Heating floor of Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Ltd (ONGC).The public interest litigation (PIL) filed by NGO Energy Watchdog through advocate Prashant Bhushan said proper procedure was not followed for appointing Patra to the post.

The plea also challenged the appointment of Shashi Shanker as Chairman and Managing Director of the ONGC.While seeking cancellation of Shankers appointment, the NGO asked the court to set aside September 25 and 29 government orders appointing him and Patra, respectively, to the ONGC board.Being an active member of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Patra could not play the role of an Independent Director or non-official director in ONGC as this would violate the Companies Act, Bhushan contended.

The plea stated that in February 2015, Shanker was suspended by the Vigilance Department of the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas for alleged gross misconduct in connection with a tender-related matter when he was Director Technology and Field Services in ONGC.He said that selection process was also flawed since Patras name did not appear in the data bank of eligible persons for the post.The NGO contended that Shankers suspension was revoked in July 2015 citing the Supreme Courts general observation that a suspended officer should be reinstated a charge-sheet is not filed within 90 days。

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