In the midst of a storm brewing over the Comptroller and Auditor-General's draft report, criticising the role of the Petroleum Ministry and the Directorate-General of Hydrocarbons (DGH) in giving an undue benefit to Reliance Industries Limited, the Ministry has called for restraint urging everyone not to jump to conclusions until the report is finalised.

In a statement on Thursday, it said: “The CAG report is at the draft stage. This Ministry is examining the draft report and it involves scrutiny of administrative/policy issues and technical issues. The preparation of a detailed reply will take some time.” Only after taking into account the reply of the government would the Office of the CAG suitably amend the draft report and send the final version for being placed before Parliament, the Ministry said.

The CAG, in its draft report, said the Ministry and the DGH favoured Reliance in the matter of cost of developing the KG-D6 gasfield, causing an unquantified loss to the exchequer.

The statement said that as the process of preparation of a reply and its vetting by the Office of the CAG was yet to be completed, it would be premature on the part of the Ministry to give any response at this stage to the observations made in the draft report. “It would be equally incorrect for the media commentators, political leaders and civil rights activists to jump to conclusions and thus short-circuit the process.”