Denying all the charges of signing a deal in favor of RIL (Reliance Industries Limited) with respect to the KGD6 block, the Government mentioned that RIL had won the land in an open international auction, which was not carried out on a nominal basis. The company had to participate and prove themselves with their commercial and technical bids in the fiercely fought auction by beating bidders including ONGC-GAIL and Cairn Energy. With its commercial and technical bids being more feasible and competitive than others, it was the most deserving one to win the KGD6 block, said the Government.
A petroleum minister officer said that the Government had embarked upon intense public consultations for around four years about using the finest practices from across the world. In 1999, they had bid out KGD6 and 23 other blocks via an international open bid under the New Exploration Licensing Policy (NELP). India Against Corruption (IAC) had accused the United Province Alliance and the earlier National Democratic Alliance Governments of giving undue favor to RIL with respect to offering the KGD6 exploration contract and concessions. The irony is that the terms of auction have always been clear and transparent among the masses, since 1999.
When asked to comment about the increased cost incurred in the KGD67 project, RIL hit back stating that it is not only them but also every international project that is undergoing the same, bearing in mind the backdrop of the economic scenario. It also clearly mentioned that it has only spent $ 5.7 billion out of the allocated $ 8.8 million and has a balance of $ 3 billion, kept as a reserve for unanticipated calamities. Hence, it has refuted all allegations about receiving favors from the government during the 5 year reign period of Murli Deora as Petroleum Minister. Contradicting to the same, Murli Deora has been the one to provoke for the need of a CAG audit.
A source close to RIL led by Mukesh Ambani also rebuffed the allegations about hoarding gas claiming them to baseless without being authenticated by any geological expertise. He mentioned that RIL is also open to any international experts assessing the situation and expressed its readiness to assist them. With respect to the audit, they once again made it clear that they are ready for the audit, if it adheres to Section 1.9 of the Accounting Procedure of the PSC, irrespective of the fact that it has already been carried out and is time barred now. It also stated that it has been objecting for a technical performance audit considering the fact that only an international expert with technical knowledge about the project and the technicalities involved in deep water operations will be able to comprehend its performance.