A top parliamentary panel Friday began examining Reliance Industries "unfairly" producing over Rs 10,000 crore worth of natural gas belonging to state-owned ONGC in the KG-basin and constituted a sub-committee to go deeper into the issue.
The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) began examining the CAG report of last year that had red-flagged $1.6 billion of excess cost recovered by RIL in the KG-D6 gas block as also state-owned ONGC's gas flowing into the eastern offshore fields of the Mukesh Ambani-led firm. Sources said a sub-committee headed by TMC MP Sukhendu Sekhar Roy was constituted to look deeper into the matter.
Officials of RIL and ONGC appeared before the panel and presented their case. The PAC has decided that its sub- committee on infrastructural projects headed by Roy will look into the matter, a source said. As much as 11.122 billion cubic meters of ONGC gas had migrated from its Godavari-PML and KG-DWN-98/2 blocks to adjoining KG-D6 of RIL between April 1, 2009 and March 31, 2015.
Last year in November, the Oil Ministry had sent a notice seeking $1.55 billion from Reliance Industries and its partners for drawing natural gas belonging to state-owned ONGC in the KG basin over the last seven years.
The Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG), had in a report tabled in August 2016, said that 831.88 sq km of KG-D6 area needs to be taken away from RIL as per the contract and cost of discoveries it had relinquished should not be allowed to be recovered from sale of oil and gas from the block. Also, cost recovery for doing discovery conformity test should be looked into, it had said.
CAG had said that the November 2015 report of independent expert DeGolyer & MacNaughton (D&M) submitted on reservoir continuity between the KG-D6 and contiguous ONGC operated blocks has pointed out that gas has migrated from the blocks owned by state-owned firm to the private company operated fields.