Mukesh Ambani-run Reliance Industries counters ONGC claims, says no connectivity between blocks

Written by PTI | New Delhi | Updated: May 31 2014, 03:43am hrs
In a strong rebuttal to ONGC's allegation that the state-owned firm's gas was flowing out of KG-D6 wells, Reliance Industries has told the Delhi High Court that the legal proceedings initiated against it are "mala fide and actuated by malice."

Filing a counter-affidavit to ONGC's claim of gas worth Rs 30,000 crore flowing from its fields to the neighbouring KG-D6 block, RIL said it was impossible to allege, much less conclude, that the discoveries within the ONGC and RIL blocks are connected.

Oil & Natural Gas Corp had moved the Delhi High Court on May 15, alleging that RIL may have drawn natural gas from its fields that are next to the Mukesh Ambani-run firm's KG-D6 block in the Krishna Godavari basin.

"...there is no continuity or connectivity between the RIL block and ONGC block as is being falsely suggested" by the state-owned firm, it said.

RIL said ONGC had "no locus standi to file the petition" as the suit was filed "entirely on the belief" of ONGC, rather than on technical data or any legal right.

All wells drilled by RIL during the development of D1-D3 field in KG-D6 are well within the boundaries of Block KG-D6 as allocated to the company following international competitive bidding.

"The production sharing contract (PSC) authorises the contractor (RIL) of the block to drill such exploration, appraisal or development wells as may be necessary for the conduct of petroleum operations within the block and all wells drilled by RIL have accordingly been approved by the management committee consisting of government representatives in accordance with the provisions of the PSC," it said.

In the Krishna Godavari (KG) basin, ONGC operates the Godavari block (G-4) and one NELP-I discovery Block KG-DWN-98/2 (KG-D5), which are contiguous to the RIL-operated NELP-I Block KG-D6.

Both ONGC and RIL have made hydrocarbon discoveries (G4-2, G4-3 & G4-5 in G4, D1 in KG-D5 by ONGC and D1, D3 in KG D6 by RIL).

"Whereas, RIL is producing gas from the D1-D3 field in KG-D6 Block since 2009, ONGC is yet to start development of discoveries in its blocks," the affidavit said.

RIL said ONGC has not even made an attempt to place perfunctory technical or any data before the High Court in support of its allegations and contentions.

Seismic data, on which ONGC based its contention, alone does not and cannot establish connectivity between hydrocarbon reservoirs even when they are in close proximity, it said.