Ahmedabad, Aug. 22
Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) resumed industrial gas production in the second phase at Hazira on Monday with the processing of another six million standard cubic metres per day (mscmd) bringing the total gas production to 12 mscmd, two weeks after suspending it due to the unprecedented floods in the Tapi River that had submerged the plant premises under six to 20 feet of water for four days from August seven.
The Plant Head and Executive Director, Mr P.K. Johari, told
Business Linefrom Hazira over the telephone that gas customer industries were now being supplied with 12 mscmd. "The normal gas processing of 40 mscmd may, however, take at least two more weeks," he added.
He said officials from National Insurance Company and re-insurers from Mathews Daniel would visit the Hazira Plant in the first week of September to assess the damage to the plant and machinery due to the floods.
After making efforts on war footing to set the things right, ONGC had resumed the first phase of processing of six mscmd on August 19. The unprecedented shut-down, the first since the plant was set up in 1985, had created a fuel crisis to a large number of subscribers depending on the ONGC's gas supplied through the GAIL (India) Ltd pipeline from Hazira to Vijaypur and Jagdishpur (HVJ) across central, western and northern states of India.
Due to non-availability of gas, Reliance had shut down two of its 14 petrochemical units at Hazira and IPCL at Vadodara whereas Essar curtailed steel production to half and scaled down power production from 600 MW to 100 MW. Other companies depending on ONGC's gas supply, also faced similar fuel crises.ONGC had suffered gas production loss of about Rs 20 crore per day since stopping processing altogether from the midnight of August 7 and 8. This did not include the losses to the plant, machinery and infrastructure, besides its employees and officials, which are also being assessed. ONGC's Hajira facility is the largest industrial gas processing plant in India, supplying more than 40 mscmd of gas per day, which is nearly half of the country's 91 mscmd gas supply per day. The Hazira plant procures gas from its western offshore's South Bassein Field, and the Panna-Mukta-Tapti (PMT) facility, a joint venture of ONGC, Reliance and British Gas. It supplies gas to the Hazira-based industrial giants and many other companies across the country. Besides, the Hazira facility, having a turnover of nearly Rs 3,700 crore, also produces two million tonnes per annum of value-added products like naphtha, LPG, HSD and kerosene.