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Greetings from India
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 March 2006 Spotlight

Greetings from India

First-time travelers to a country as large and varied as India would be lucky to meet up with P.D. Bahukhandi, as James Thomas, ASTM International president and Kitty Kono, ASTM vice president for global cooperation, recently did during their journey. In addition to being deputy general manager of the Indian Oil Corporation and a member of ASTM International Committee D02 on Petroleum Products and Lubricants, Bahukhandi is clearly a great source of knowledge about the petroleum industry, as well as about the vast country he calls home.

P.D. Bahukhandi (center) meets with James Thomas, ASTM president and Kitty Kono, ASTM vice president for global cooperation in New Delhi, India in January.

In his position at Indian Oil, Bahukhandi oversees the quality control of many of the company’s laboratories. “Indian Oil has 37 static laboratories and 23 mobile laboratories across the nation, providing analytical support for in-house and marketing quality discipline,” says Bahukhandi. “I am responsible for their function and support. In addition to this, 97 aviation fueling stations are also provided with field
laboratory support.” Bahukhandi notes that Indian Oil’s quality control team includes 120 members who audit 254 locations.

Bahukhandi entertains friends with his flute playing on Jan. 26, the 57th Republic Day of India.

Indian Oil Corporation is the largest oil company in India and produces about 60 percent of the country’s oil. It also ranks as the 18th largest petroleum company in the world and, at number 170, is the highest-ranked Indian company in the Fortune 500 listing of global corporations.

Bahukhandi is an active member of the Bureau of Indian Standards’ Petroleum Committee and has chaired the BIS committee PCD: 1, which works on methods of measurement and test for petroleum, petroleum products and lubricants. In addition, Bahukhandi is a member of PCD: 3, which works on specifications for petroleum and related products.

Born and raised in Mathura, a town in northern India and the birthplace of Lord Krishna, Bahukhandi has lived in many areas of India and currently lives and works in the city of Mumbai, which was previously known as Bombay. According to Bahukhandi, fast-paced Mumbai is a great city in which to experience much of the diversity of India. Many historical sites and natural wonders can be found in and around Mumbai, which is also home to the largest film industry in the world. Over 800 movies are produced in India each year.

While he is now based in Mumbai, Bahukhandi still has a deep appreciation for all that India has to offer. “India is the largest democracy in the world. It is a land of diversities in landscape, languages spoken, religions followed and natural wealth,” says Bahukhandi, who is well-versed in India’s history and cultural heritage, as well as its ever-evolving role on the world stage.

When not working, Bahukhandi likes to play the flute, a hobby he has taken up within the last decade. “I have always been driven by a constant zeal to try out different things,” says Bahukhandi. “This led me to take up playing the flute. It’s a good way to loosen myself after long hours of work.” Bahukhandi taught himself to play the flute and enjoys playing “soft soul tunes taken from Hindi folk and popular songs.” One reason Bahukhandi favors the flute over other instruments is its portability, which allows him to take it along on his travels.

In addition to playing the flute, Bahukhandi also enjoys swimming and cooking in his spare time. He lives with his wife Sharda; their children, son Ashirwad and daughters Vishwapriya and Priyadarshini, all currently reside in the United States.

Bahukhandi joined ASTM International’s Committee D02 on Petroleum Products and Lubricants five years ago and highly values his participation in the committee. “It feels great to be a part of the standards-making process,” says Bahukhandi of his ASTM work. “ASTM standards are very scientific and practical and provide lots of input for the user into the entire chain of activity. ASTM is open, transparent and has a great pool of wisdom.”

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