JAIPUR: The Rajasthan Government is considering a proposal to spend a portion of the royalties obtained from oil extraction in Barmer district on local development. An official committee has recommended that three per cent of the royalties may be spent on development activities near the oil extraction sites in western Rajasthan.

State Mines and Minerals Minister Rajendra Pareek said in the monsoon session of the Assembly which ended here on Friday that the ratio of royalties to be utilised for local development would be decided shortly. “Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot has felt its need and is constantly monitoring the progress in the matter,” he said.

Mr. Pareek pointed out that the income from royalties in Barmer district is steadily increasing, while the Fourth Finance Commission and the official committee are jointly examining the issue of its utilisation for development of infrastructure in the region.

He said the State Government obtained royalties worth Rs.3,418.93 crore in 2011-12, Rs.1,607.99 crore in 2010-11, Rs.103.76 crore in 2009-10, Rs.3.27 crore in 2008-09 and Rs.3.98 crore in 2007-08 from extraction of oil and natural gas.

The Oil and Natural Gas Corporation is the main agency responsible for extraction of oil reserves, while Cairn India Limited and Vedanta Group are partners in the work. About 1.50 lakh barrels a day are being extracted from Mangala field and 25,000 barrels a day from Bhagyam field. Oil is not being extracted as of now at Aishwarya field.