New Delhi : Oil regulator PNGRB has terminated Gail India’s licence to build a Rs 10,000 crore natural gas pipeline from Surat in Gujarat to Paradip in Odisha, saying the state-owned firm hadn’t started work on the project even after six years.

The Petroleum and Natural Gas Regulatory Board (PNGRB) also ordered encashing the company’s entire performance bank guarantee of Rs 20 crore, according to the regulator’s March 13 order. Gail had in November 2011 bid an astonishingly low pipeline tariff of Rs 0.01 (one paisa) per million British thermal unit to bag the project. It was formally awarded the licence in April 2012.

It had beaten Gujarat government firm GSPC India Transco to bag the Surat-Paradip project. This was the country’s first pipeline originating and terminating at a port.

The 2,112-km long pipeline was to have a capacity to carry 74.81 million standard cubic meters per day of gas.

Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan had on numerous occasions told Parliament that the work on Surat-Paradip and other such pipelines had not started because of several reasons including non-availability of anchor load customers.

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