NEW DELHI, Dec 23 � Oil India Limited (OIL) has been rapped for under-utilisation of allocated funds. The Directorate� General of Hydrocarbon (DGH) has been directed to take all effective steps to ensure full utilisation of budget estimates of Rs 3,180 crore.
The Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas has blamed the poor law-and-order situation in Assam and the acute land acquisition problems and environmental issues for the inability on part of OIL to utilise the funds. But the Parliamentary Standing Committee attached to the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas has refused to buy the argument for the shortfall in utilisation of funds for two consecutive financial years.
In an Action Taken Report submitted in the Parliament on Thursday, the Panel observed that against the budget estimate of Rs 2,375.35 crore (2009-2010), the actual expenditure by OIL was Rs 1556.86 crore. Again in 2010-2011, the actual expenditure was only Rs 1241.17 crore against the Budget estimate of Rs 4464.98 crore, which came to 27.8 per cent utilisation during the first three quarters of the fiscal.
The reasons for downwards revision of plan outlays by OIL had been attributed to deferment of 2D seismic survey in Rajasthan on account of prioritisation of area for 3D seismic survey and prolonged rainy season and also cyclonic storm in KG on-land block.
The Parliamentary Panel remarked that it failed to understand as to why the reasons cited by the Government could not be foreseen at the revised estimate stage. The huge mismatch between the plan outlay and utilisation by OIL during last fiscal pointed towards systemic flaw in planning and execution of work, the report noted.
The Monitoring Cell generated a monthly report, which brought out the current status of implementation of various projects along with reasons for delay.
Critical areas, which can impact the progress were also analysed. The Committee said it was constrained to note that despite the strict monitoring by the Ministry there had been large under-utilisation of funds.
It was recommended that the Government of India strengthen its monitoring mechanism to make it more effective and take all necessary steps to ensure the utilisation of funds to achieve targets.
OIL said, in 2009-2010, the 150 GLKM of 2D survey in Karbi Anglong could not be completed due to difficult logistics and poor law-and-order situation. The 615 GLKM of 2D survey in Sadiya could not be completed as seismic contractor, GT Poland declared force majeure due to insurgency problem.
The committee is not convinced with the reply of Government and feels that reasons for the shortfall due to necessary infrastructure not in place were avoidable and could have been timely addressed with proper planning by the company.