TODAY -

Oil exploration comes to halt
Source: Hueiyen News Service

Imphal, September 08 2013: With United Naga Council (UNC) putting a ban on oil exploration in Naga inhabited areas of Manipur, all the related oil drilling activities in the State have come to a complete halt of late.

According to reports received by Hueiyen Lanpao, the multinational companies are engaged for the oil exploration in the State under a contract signed with the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas, Government of India.

After the contract was allotted, the companies signed another MoU with the Government of Manipur and the exploration process commenced.

However, UNC has objected to the exploration of oil in Naga inhibited areas and has instructed the companies engaged in the exploration process to take prior permission before any oil exploration work is taken up.

Since the companies did not take prior permission, UNC has imposed a complete ban on the oil exploration process in Naga inhabited areas of the State.

Not knowing what to do in a state where there seems to be two different governments, the companies have ceased their works for the last three months.

Though the State Government is aware of the prevailing condition, it has been remaining like a silent spectator on the ground that there has been no official intimidation from side of the companies for providing the required security arrangements to carry on with their works unhindered.

It has also been reported that the companies have not yet communicated to the State Government officially about the UNC ban on oil exploration process in the State.

According to another highly official source, the oil exploration process in the State was taken up at three different places following reports that there is likelihood of the presence of rich deposits of petroleum products in these areas.

The oil exploration at Jiribam is to be taken up by Oil and Natural Gas Corporation, but the process has not yet been started as of now.

The oil exploration process had already begun in the interiors of Churachandpur and Tamenglong district in full swing by the Jubilant House Private Limited before UNC imposed the ban.

The source further revealed that favourable structures on the presence of petroleum products in different parts of the State have been found out through seismic survey process.

However, for drill up these petroleum products, large machines would be required.

The jubilant House Pvt Ltd has asked permission from the State Government for bringing in the required drilling machines.

But the State Government has denied the permission on the ground that the condition of Imphal-Jiribam road is not fit to handle large size drilling machines.

Another source revealed that even though there is much likelihood of the presence of petroleum products in the State there is no guarantee that petroleum products will be found in the speculated areas alone.

Even though it is found, the quantity could be so little that the company exploring the petroleum products will experience loss.

It went on to reveal that though the people of the State is against the exploration of oil, the petroleum products, if at all there is in plenty, could be easily pumped out by the neighbouring States as the petroleum rich belts is interconnected to each other.

So, the multinational companies could drill out the oil one way or the other from other willing neighboring States.

On the other hand, the petroleum products could also get dried up in case of the occurrence of natural calamities, the source added.


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