It is widely believed that there are two India : one that lives in villages, with the inhabitants continuously struggling to make thier4 tw2o ends meet. They are deprived of all basic essentials for a proper living, driving some of the even to suicide as reported in the media.
There is yet another India of a "five - star" culture. They have all the facilities for posh life, money to throw away. These people debate about the elevation of the poor in five star hotels without consideration of ground realities. The matter ends there, and nothing significant gets translated into practice. While these elite enjoy the benefits of prosperity, the gap between the haves and have-nots continuing to increase.
ONGC is no different, there are two ONGC: One comprising those who started the organization from scratch witho0ut any knowledge of oil exploration and producton business. These dedicated people worked day and night to develop compegence and experise. It is their untiring efforts, dedication and passion for India's energy independence that created huge oil and gas rerseres and made ONGC into what it is today: a world class integrated oil company operating not only in India but also in any other counterspies around the worold.
These ONGCians worked in hard and hostile environment t with no facilities; not even safety kits. Those working on drilling rigs had to wrap old newspapers on their feet and hands while handling pipes and tools to avoid cold bites in the night and hot burns during hot day. They had no proper place to sleep nor proper food to eat.
Conditions in field parties were no different. Working in hot and cold sands and forests they had not only to brave the hostile weather, but snakes
, wild animals and some times even docoits who would capture them, presuming them to be police personnel. They lived in tents where even water had ti be brought from long distances. The camps were not allowed to close till the temperature crossed 44 C. These hard ONGCians worked for long hours with low pay and no allowances. The CPF contribution was also low (8.33%, now it is 15%), with interest rates ranging from a mere 2.5% to. 3.5% in later years. Coup0led with low grqatuity of Rs. 10,000 which went up to 50,000 in later years, these people received a paltry retirement amount, ranging from a few thousand to a few lacs (for higher paid officers). All this has put the ONGCians of yesteryear to lead nearly starving life. MANY OF THEM DIED OF HUNGER, MANY MORE ARE TAKING THE ONLY AVAILABLE MEAL DURING THE DAY IN TEMPLES AND GURUDWARAS. MAY BE HARD FOR MANY TO BELIEVE, BUT THIS IS ENTIRELY FACTUAL.
What was their fault ? Joining ONGC and working hard to realize the dreams of Malaviyaji who like promised them a good life and pension.However, like any politician , the orders for same were never issued. We believed our Minister and our mentor.
Look at today's ONGCian. They are flush with money, and nwill find it harfd to believe the sacrifices made by their seniors that made this possible. Many of the new ONGCians are so far remoived fromn conditonss faced by the "founding fasthers" of ONGC tht they do not think twice about spending mine, and shedding out most of the hard work to contractors without revealing the consequences.
With great struggle we could persuade the present ONGC management to provide small relief to these older and poorer ONGCians. The proposal is now stuck with the Govt. that unfortunately does not realize that each passing day results in a few ONGCians left alive to benefit from the propsed relief.
The "ONGC Connect" journal is an attempt to bridge the gapl between the poor old ONGCians and oil the new ONGCians. The journal's inaugural issue has tried to bring articles from industry stalwarts with the hope that this will bring positive thinking about the old ONGCians.
"You cannot solve a problem with same mindset, which inhiti8ally has created it"
Dr. K.L. Goyal is Ph.D, D.Sc,FIE, FNASc, F.M.B.A. (U.K.), F.Inst. Pet. (U.K.)
for years Gratuity was Rs.10,000 and then Rs.36,000. With effect from 1.1.86, it was Rs. 1 .lac...from 1997, it was Rs.3.5 lakhs....and 1.1.7 Rs, 10,00,000....Pay of senior officers was too less. Mostly people got germinal dues in touswands. An E-8 officer retired in the later part of 1991, did not get total terminal benefits more than 4 lacs.