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HindustanTimes Fri,01 Aug 2014

ONGC moves Delhi High Court, alleges gas pilferage by Reliance

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, May 15, 2014
First Published: 23:56 IST(15/5/2014) | Last Updated: 00:00 IST(16/5/2014)

State-owned ONGC has moved the Delhi High Court accusing Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) of extracting substantial gas from its gas-producing block in the Krishna Godavari basin. Reliance’s KG-D6 gas producing block sits next to the two ONGC’s blocks in the KG basin.

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HT was the first to report on May 6 about the possible legal recourse being planned by ONGC against RIL on the issue.

Justice Manmohan on Thursday issued notice to the petroleum ministry, the Directorate General of Hydrocarbons (DGH) and RIL and sought their responses on ONGC’s petition in which the public sector unit has claimed that RIL has taken out 18 billion cubic metres of natural gas from two ONGC’s gas blocks — Godavari PML and KG-DWN-98/2 — through wells drilled by it in its KG-D6 block.

ONGC has sought directions to set up a court monitored "independent agency" to ascertain full accounts of gas produced and sold by RIL since 2009. It has sought compensation, if the independent agency comes to the conclusion that RIL extracted gas from blocks belonging to ONGC.

"All petroleum operations undertaken by RIL have been in accordance with the production sharing contract (PSC) and the development plan approved by management committee which has government representatives with veto powers...RIL has been constructively engaged with ONGC in sharing of data and finding a suitable resolution through appointment of an independent third party expert – the most recent being as late as on May 9, 2014," an RIL spokesperson said.

The court has listed the matter for further hearing on May 29.


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