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Updated: July 14, 2013 08:35 IST

Hit by acute scarcity of gas, BGL throws up hands

P. Sujatha Varma
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The mother station for Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) set up by the Bhagyanagar Gas Ltd to supply CNG for domestic and transport at Shameerpet in Hyderabad on Wednesday.
The Hindu The mother station for Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) set up by the Bhagyanagar Gas Ltd to supply CNG for domestic and transport at Shameerpet in Hyderabad on Wednesday.

We are facing acute scarcity of CNG and incurring huge losses: official

Even as the clamour for allocation of more gas by gas-based plants in the State and users of Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) is growing by the day, the Bhagyanagar Gas Limited (BGL), the only agency mandated to supply gas in Andhra Pradesh, cites inability to rise to the dire need. “The situation is miserable. We are facing acute scarcity of gas. The company is incurring huge losses as the product is not getting converted into utilisation. We are eagerly waiting for the Government orders for allocation of more gas. The power industry is in doldrums and gas-based plants like GMR, GVK and Lanco have taken the hit,” S.V. Prasad, BGL vice-president (Projects and O&M), Hyderabad, told The Hindu on Friday.

Referring to the precarious future of the project if the company is denied gas from Reliance’s Krishna-Godavari D6 basin, Mr. Prasad says things are very obscure at this point as the given timeframes are going beyond cut-off dates.

Situation all over the country is more or less the same, he says, adding “especially in Andhra Pradesh, where the Government does not have any import facility. It is a costly affair too,” he maintains.

The BGL officials rue that investing huge money in construction of pipelines and other infrastructural facilities without gas supply does not make any sense. They are hoping that the Petroleum and Energy Ministries initiate immediate steps for allocation of sufficient gas supply to overcome the shortage.

Meanwhile, closer home in Vijayawada, officials of the AP State Road Transport Corporation (APSRTC) have heaved a sigh of relief after a meeting with the BGL a couple of days ago to thrash out a solution to the CNG scarcity problem. “On an average, the RTC requires about 20,000 kg. of CNG every day but as of now, we are getting little less than that. But the BGL officials have agreed to fulfil our needs from next month,” says G. Sudesh Kumar, RTC’s Regional Manager, Krishna.

At times, the RTC is forced to hold back 10-15 vehicles due to non-availability of CNG. The BGL has also promised to commence CNG supply to the Vidyadharapuram depot directly through pipeline in a week’s time. This will spare the RTC valuable time and labour cost involved in transportation of the gas kits in vehicles.

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