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N K Verma takes over as ONGC Videsh MD

Narendra Kumar Verma has taken over as Managing Director of ONGC Videsh Ltd (OVL), the overseas investment arm of state-run explorer Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC). Prior to this, Verma, 55, was director for exploration in ONGC.  The position of MD, OVL fell vacant on March 1 after Dinesh K Sarraf was elevated as CMD of ONGC. Verma, before taking over as Director (Exploration), ONGC on April 1, 2013, was a director on board of OVL.

‘At OVL, Verma was responsible for the growth strategy and business development with several high value acquisitions in last one year,’ a company statement said.  An MSc in Applied Geology from Lucknow University and MTech in Petroleum Exploration from Indian School of Mines, Dhanbad, Verma also holds a Masters in Business Administration in Finance.

An accomplished geologist and manager, Verma is the recipient of prestigious ‘National Mineral Award’, the highest recognition by the Government of India in the field of geo-sciences, mining and allied areas, for his outstanding contribution to petroleum exploration in Mumbai Offshore. He has also published more than 20 technical papers and over 40 technical reports.

Verma joined ONGC in 1980 and has been associated extensively with exploration and development-related activities in a number of Indian and foreign basins. As an exploration geologist, he has conceptualised exploration projects in a wide variety of basins, including deep waters resulting in reserve accretion and evaluation of hydrocarbon potential.

The Public Enterprises Selection Board (PESB) chose Verma after interviewing seven candidates on May 21. OVL has interests in 33 oil and gas assets in 17 countries and contributes 12 per cent and 7 per cent of India’s oil and natural gas production, respectively.

In terms of reserves and production, OVL is the second largest petroleum company of India, next only to parent ONGC. Verma, who will superannuate in January 2019, will also be eligible for the job of ONGC CMD on Sarraf’s retirement in 2017. Incidentally, Sarraf too used the OVL route to the top post in ONGC. He was director (finance) with ONGC before he went on to head OVL.
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