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Keep us in the loop: power ministry to law ministry

business Updated: Sep 20, 2009 22:47 IST

The Ministry of Power has asked the Ministry of Law and Justice to make it and NTPC Ltd part of the government’s core team while firming up its legal stand in the ongoing gas dispute between the Ambani brothers in the Supreme Court (SC).

The government, represented by the petroleum ministry, has filed a special leave petition in the apex court stating that the rights of the government as the owner of the gas are supreme over any private arrangement (under which the Ambani brothers had divided the gas between their companies).

Mukesh Ambani managed Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) and Anil Ambani controlled Reliance Natural Resources Ltd (RNRL) are fighting a legal battle in the SC over the pricing and supply of gas from RIL’s gas fields in the Krishna Godavari basin.

“The Ministry of Power may be involved at the level of joint secretary and NTPC at the level of its chairman and managing director, to be part of the team while briefing the legal officers representing the ministry of petroleum and natural gas’s case in the SC,” a September 15 letter by power secretary H.S. Bramha to law secretary T.K. Vishwanath stated.

“This is to ensure that ministry of power and NTPC are fully aware of the various implications (arising out of the move initiated by the petroleum ministry), especially concerning the interests of the NTPC.”

NTPC has also filed an interim application in the SC, as any decision coming out in the RIL-RNRL matter will impact NTPC’s case in the Mumbai High Court. NTPC is fighting a parallel battle with RIL over the pricing of gas produced from the lattr’s gas fields in the Krishna Godavari basin.