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OIL suffering losses due to bandhs: Bora

By Staff Reporter

GUWAHATI, Nov 6 - Public sector giant Oil India Ltd (OIL) has suffered losses to the tune of Rs 45 crore in the last two years due to disruptions to its operations on account of bandhs, blockades and other agitations.

Addressing the media here today, Chairman and Managing Director of OIL Utpal Bora said that bandhs, blockades and agitations have affected the company�s operations in the State.

�We suffer because of such events but so does the government as it results in loss of royalty,� he said.

Asked about the quantum of losses, he said that production loss on account of bandhs and other disruptions during the past two year have been of Rs 45 crore in monetary terms.

Bora said that OIL officials have met Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal in this regard to ensure that bandhs and stoppages do not hurt the firm�s productions.

�The Chief Minister has assured us all help� We are encouraged and elated by his response that the government will try to ensure that there are no stoppages or disruptions to production,� he said.

The company�s oil production has fallen from a peak of 3.8 million metric tonnes per annum (MMTPA) five years ago to 3.24 MMTPA last year. However, gas production during this period has gone up from 2.6 Billion Cubic Metres (BCM) to 2.8 BCM. Bora, on his part, said that despite spending Rs 130 crore in CSR activities last year, the company continues to receive demands from various organizations.

�Some time we get demands for up to 40 or 60 different schemes from one single organization which is not possible for us to fulfil,� he said.

The OIL CMD said that the company has 1,500 fields in the State. At least 30 per cent of the company�s fields are �non-flowing fields� and OIL is aiming to reduce that number to 10 per cent.

He added that besides disruptions due to bandhs and agitations, the company is also faced with the problem of theft and pilferage. Miscreants close down the oil wells by switching off the valves.

�Two weeks ago 7-8 wells were closed down by miscreants. We have sought the help of the State government for patrolling of oil and gas fields,� Bora said.

�Besides, the oil fields are scattered and it is not possible to have security across all 1,500 fields. So we have sought the help of State Police,� said the OIL CMD.

Regarding the issue of supply of gas to the Namrup Thermal Power Plant, he said supply to the plant has now been fully restored.

On the issue of supply of gas to tea gardens, Bora said that following inquiry it was found that some tea estates were drawing allocation above their stipulated limit, while some were diverting gas to run their generators.

�Assam Gas Company has been directed to fix sophisticated valves, instead of the manual valves, so that such activities could be curbed,� Bora said.

Asked about shale gas, he said it is still in infancy in India but assessment for shale gas will be started at one of the Petroleum Mining Lease (PML) in December.

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