AAP alleges Moily cabinet note favoured Essar
He alleged that Moily had moved a cabinet note stating that the Ratna oil field, a medium size oil field 130 km south-west of Mumbai, be given to the Essar group at price fixed in 1993. ‘In 1993, the union government decided to give the Ratna oil field to the Essar Group. The Letter of Award was given to the company in 1996, but the contract was not signed, said Bhushan.
‘But in his last days in office Moily has asked his officers to prepare a cabinet note on the issue and that the oil field contract should be given to the Essar group,’ he added. He said that despite Ministry officers warning of a huge loss of government revenue, Moily was going ahead with the move.
Bhushan said that in 2008 the Cabinet Secretary had noted that ‘proposal involves substantial abandonment of government revenue’ and that the contract too had not been duly concluded.
‘Over a period of time the price of the (Ratna) oil field has increased from Rs. 1.44 billion in 1994 to Rs. 9 billion to 2013 and fuel prices have increased by 20 times,’ said Bhushan.
Bhushan further alleged that Moily had also approached the cabinet for relaxation in three gas basins D29, D30 and D31 to benefit Reliance Industries. ‘The basins were awarded to Reliance in 2002. The contractors were supposed to make discoveries within a period of 10 years failing which the basins have to be surrendered.
The Director General of Hydrocarbons had said that since Reliance failed to show any kind of discovery, as per the contract, the basins should have been surrendered in 2012. Moily has sought amendment in the contract to benefit Reliance for which he moved a note with the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs,’ he alleged.