Oil cos mull Assam gas pipeline
The hope of Guwahati for getting piped gas is likely to become reality with oil companies now exploring the possibility of laying over a 300 km long pipeline from Numaligarh in Upper Assam to Guwahati.
Already the 196 km long Duliajan-Numaligarh pipeline is set to become functional by September or October this year. The pipeline is initiated by Duliajan Numaligarh Pipeline Company Limited (DNPCL).
This pipeline can be considered as the first step towards building of the Super Energy Highway and will lay the foundation for development of new gas-based industries in the entire Northeast India.
Dr Bhupati K Das, chairman of Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) Assam State Council and managing director of Numaligarh Refinery Limited (NRL) told ET, "The cost of the pipeline project between Duliajan-Numaligarh is around Rs 318 crore. In the DNPCL, Assam government-owned Assam Gas Company Limited has 51%, NRL 26% and Oil India Limited has 23% stake. The 16 inch wide pipeline has a capacity of one mmscmd (million metric standard cubic metres per day)."
He added, "A major beneficiary of this pipeline will be NRL. We are exploring the possibility of extending the pipeline to Guwahati and will implement the same in joint venture mode. Talks are on. However, we are yet to finalise the equity structure. Once the pipeline is in Guwahati, City Gas and CNG will be available here,"
L. Mansingh chairman of Petroleum and Natural Gas Regulatory Board (PNGRB) who was in Guwahati on Friday to attend the roundtable on the city and local natural gas distribution networks organized by CII in association Indian Oil's Guwahati Refinery and Tripura Natural Gas Corporation Ltd said, "We will look into the regulatory issues of this project. We sought the help of Northeastern Council (NEC) in organizing a meeting of the northeastern states in Shillong to discuss the issue of piped gas." He asked CII to take the initiative to prepare a gas grid in Assam.