Indian Oil Corporation will transport 10 tankers of fuel from Assam to Tripura through Bangladesh tomorrow for the second time in a month to avoid the dilapidated NH-44 in Barak Valley.
Indian Oil-AOD, the company’s North East division, will move LPG from its North Guwahati bottling plant to Bishalgarh unit in Tripura in a convoy through Bangladesh.
“This is the second convoy of fuel we are moving to Tripura through Bangladesh. In this convoy, we will transport exclusively LPG in 10 tankers,” IOC Executive Director (IndianOil-AOD) Dipankar Ray told PTI here.
This consignment will be followed by another convoy next week, he added.
On September 9, IOC transported nine tank trucks carrying 1,08,000 litres of diesel and kerosene and one LPG truck from its Guwahati depot to Tripura via Bangladesh.
The transportation agreement with Bangladesh is valid till this month.
“This option of sending tankers via Bangladesh started to overcome fuel shortage in Tripura. The crisis is receding now. Regarding renewal of contract, we will take a decision by the end of this month or first week of October,” Ray said.
During May-June, Tripura had faced unprecedented fuel crisis as supply was badly hit due to pathetic condition of NH-44 at Barak Valley in Assam and thousands of tankers were stranded on roads for weeks.
The situation forced IOC and Tripura government to scout for alternate ways to supply fuel.
One of the options was transportation of tankers by open rail wagons from Bhanga in Assam to Churaibari in Tripura, but IOC termed this system non-economical as transporting 24 tankers one way cost Rs 3.9 lakh.
NF Railway has made two trips with oil tankers so far and the company will use this mode only in extreme cases.
IOC then identified a road route via Bangladesh and everything was finalised along with signing of an agreement within just one and half month.
The distance for transporting POL and LPG from IOC’s Betkuchi depot here to Dharmanagar in Tripura via Bangladesh is 366 km, including 126 km inside the neighbouring nation, against 386 km in the normal route through Barak Valley.
The convoy enters Bangladesh through Dawki point in Meghalaya and re-enters India at Kailashahar in Tripura.
As per the agreement, IOC pays 1.02 Bangladeshi Taka per tonne per km along with 200 Bangladeshi Taka for entry and exit charges. The MoU also says that at any point of time, not more than 160 tankers will be plying on Bangladeshi roads.
The company pays in total around 1,500 Bangladeshi Taka to the neighbouring nation per vehicle, which is about Rs 1,300 in Indian currency.