Essar bags 3 more CBM blocks after Deep is disqualified

The Ruias' Essar Oil has bagged three more coal bed methane (CBM) blocks after a panel of secretaries rejected the bids put in by a consortium led by Deep Industries Ltd, according to reports.
 
As the highest bidder, Deep had provisionally won seven of the 10 CBM blocks that the government had put up for auction at the close of bidding on 12 October. However, an empowered committee of secretaries (ECS) on Thursday rejected Deep's bids on the ground that it did not meet the qualifying criteria.
 
According to the reports, which were not officially confirmed, Essar will now get three blocks in addition to the one it was already awarded on 12 October. Great Eastern Energy would get one block in Assam, while the other two blocks will go to Australia's Arrow Energy.
 
Essar has got Orissa's Talcher, IB Valley and Sohagpur blocks in addition to the one it has at Mehsana in Gujarat, making it the country's biggest CBM operator. CBM is essentially gas trapped amid layers of coal.
 
The ECS reportedly adjudged Arrow Energy as the winner of Assam and Satpura blocks. Deep was the only bidder in the seventh block, which would now be put up for re-bidding in the next auction in 2010.