New Delhi: Former Petroleum Minister M Veerappa Moily on Thursday asked the Modi government to use the strategic oil storages he built during the UPA regime to tackle the fallout of the volatility in the international oil markets as being witnessed now.
In a statement issued here, he said the UPA had envisaged the price shocks that came after devastating attacks on the Saudi facilities and built strategic oil storages at three places and two were in the pipeline.
"The present government has been going on snail pace in taking measures during the last six years to utilise these facilities. This is a criminal neglect on the part of the petroleum ministry," he said.
He pointed out that the Congress-led UPA had built the underground oil storages at Vishakhapatnam in Andhra Pradesh and Mangalore and Padur in Karnataka as insurance against the emergencies and in the pipeline were two more caverns--one in Odisha and another at Padur in Udupi in Karnataka--that have been junked by the present government.
Moily said the caverns commissioned during his tenure have the underground storage capacity of 5.33 million tonne while the strategic petroleum reserves of India stand at only 55 per cent of it.