SC seeks Centre’s reply on BJP leader Sambit Patra’s appointment to ONGC board

New Delhi: While the debate is going on over the issue of sending BJP national spokesman Sambit Patra to Rajya Sabha, on the other side Supreme Court has sought a reply from the centre on his appointment as ONGC board member. The court has asked when Patra is not eligible for the post on what basis his appointment has been made. While hearing a petition on Tuesday Supreme Court said it would hear the Centre on a plea that a non-governmental organisation filed challenging Bharatiya Janata Party spokesperson Sambit Patra’s appointment as an independent director on the Oil and Natural Gas Company board.

The petitioners is said to have challenged Patra’s appointment on three grounds. First, they argued that he was not “independent” as he was a member of the ruling BJP. Second, the petitioners said that Patra did not fulfil the eligibility criteria for the appointment. Third, they said that the highly-paid post should not be offered to ineligible persons only because they are close to the government.

The Supreme Court also asked if he did not fulfil the eligibility criteria for the appointment on what basis he is appointed the independent director of ONGC. The petition stated despite not being eligible for the post on what basis he is given 27 lakh per annum salary.