Bihar gets first sniff of oil, gas reserves

Bihar gets first sniff of oil, gas reserves

An ongoing aeromagnetic survey by Cairn Energy Ltd has indicated that Purnea district in Bihar may have huge reserves of oil and natural gas.

“As per the initial data collected during the survey, chances of oil and natural gas reserves are high in Purnea. We are keeping our fingers crossed for the time being,” said energy minister Bijeyndra Yadav.

The minister is in constant touch with Cairn India officials busy with th survey.

Cairn India launched an aeromagnetic survey last month in 12 districts of Bihar lying in the gangetic basin to search for oil and gas reserves.

This is the first-of-its-kind exploration in the state and will continue over three months and cover an area of 15,500 sq km. Cairn is using a special kind of aircraft from Canada for the survey.

Following the Cairn study, the Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) will go for the second leg of exploration.

The news if true, will come as a windfall for Bihar because all the mineral-rich areas had gone to Jharkhand after the state was bifurated. “It will come as a boon for Bihar. Our economy will receive a major thrust”, said Yadav, who is more or less certain that Bihar has huge reserves of the natural wealth.

Inaugurating the survey on Januray 15, chief minister Nitish Kumar too, had hoped that the survey would find oil in the state.

Indian Express Newspapers (Bombay) Ltd.

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