Government to keep out of Ambani gas row

The central government on Friday responded to Anil Ambani's allegations that it had sided with Reliance Industries Ltd compromising its own profits and that of the National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC).

Union power minister, Sushil Kumar Shinde today said in New Delhi that the government did not want to get involved in the gas dispute with the Ambani brothers but it had to protect its own interests. He added that the dispute between NTPC and RIL had nothing to do with that between the two brothers and NTPC had a right to take its own decisions.

A four-member group of ministers, law minister Veerappa Moily, petroleum minister Murli Deora, fiannce minister Pranab Mukherjee and power minister Sushil Kumar Shinde discussed the issues relating to the Ambani row over the KG Basin gas in New Delhi for the second time in the last two days.

After the meeting, law minister Veerappa Moily said that the government was looking for a stand in the case between Mukesh Ambani's RIL and NTPC similar to that as in the case between RIL and Anil Ambanbi's Reliance Natural Resources Ltd (RNRL).

The KG basin gas issue has both NTPC and the Anil Ambani group fighting separate cases with RIL over the pricing of gas.

The natural gas row has two of India's biggest corporates fighting a legal battle over rights to sell the gas produced and its pricing.

It started in 2005 when an MoU regarding the pricing and distribution of the gas was signed, as the Reliance group was split between the two brothers.