Dharmendra Pradhan dedicates oil producing Bengal Basin to nation
29 December 2020
Minister for petroleum and natural gas and steel Dharmendra Pradhan on Sunday dedicated the Bengal Basin, the eighth producing basin of India, to the nation, bolstering efforts to meet one of the vital energy needs of the country.
Dedicating the Asokenagar discovery to the nation, the minister said the new producing basin would play a role for India’s energy security and help reduce the country’s dependence on oil imports. Pradhan congratulated ONGC and said that with this discovery, around seven decades of relentless endeavours by scientists and engineers of India have borne fruits, giving a new hope for robust development of West Bengal. Bengal Basin finally looks set to find a place on the oil and gas map of the world, he added.
The minister said the Indian government is committed to fully support ONGC to make this a turning point in its strive to bring more oil and gas from subsurface of West Bengal and help to bring new phase of prosperity for the state and its people along-with local employment. He further added that the formal dedication of production site to the nation today marks this as a moment of national pride and a gift from soil of West Bengal to India.
The well Asoknagar-1 was completed as an oil producer under Early-Monetisation Plan issued by Government of India. ONGC has so far discovered and put to production seven out of the eight producing basins of India covering 83 per cent of established oil and gas reserves. ONGC is India’s largest oil and gas producer contributing 72 per cent of the country’s hydrocarbon production.
Bringing the Asokenagar-1 well to production is the culmination of ONGC’s painstaking search for hydrocarbons in the region. ONGC send its first hydrocarbon consignment produced during well testing to IOCL’s Haldia Oil Refinery on 5 November 2020.
At a function attended also by Lok Sabha Member Jyotirmay Singh Mahato and ONGC CMD Shashi Shanker, at the production site of Asokenagar, around 50 Km from state capital Kolkata, Pradhan formally inaugurated production of oil by switching on the Sucker Rod Pump (SRP) amidst a select gathering of senior officials, following Covid protocols.