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RIL denies hoarding charges

business Updated: Aug 30, 2009 17:15 IST

Mukesh Ambani-led RIL has asked the Centre to nominate users for incremental gas from its Bay of Bengal fields, saying that it has not denied natural gas to any government-identified customer.

Rubbishing Anil Ambani Group's charges of "hoarding" gas and creating "artificial scarcity", RIL Executive Director and Head of Oil and Gas Business PMS Prasad said customers for about one-fourth of the initial 40 mmscmd of gas from KG-D6 fields are yet to draw due to failure at their ends.

Anil Ambani Group, which is fighting a legal battle with Reliance Industries for obtaining gas at a price of USD 2.34 pet mmBtu had alleged that RIL was deliberately under producing to create artificial scarcity.

The Supreme Court is to hear the case from October 20.

In a letter to Petroleum Secretary R S Pandey, Prasad said of the customers identified by the government to receive the initial 40 million standard cubic meters per day of gas, NTPC, Dabhol, Essar and GAIL are yet to draw a single unit.

NTPC, which was allocated 2.7 mmscmd, is yet to sign a contract, while Ratnagiri Gas and Power - the owner of Dabhol - has signed a contract for 2.7 mmscmd but has not begun drawing yet. Essar and GAIL between them are expected to start taking 4 mmscmd of gas by next month.

"Of the allocated quantity of 40 mmscmd, allocation to the extent of 9.4 mmscmd remains un-operational till date," he wrote. "No customer who has been allocated gas by government, has been denied gas for reasons attributable to RIL."