Natural gas reserves discovered in Tripura
Natural gas was found emitting from the ground at Ujan Maidan area in Khowai district, 65km from here since Saturday.
Sub-divisional magistrate of Khowai, Bimbishaar Bhattacharjee, said an official team headed by him visited the area on Saturday to verify the details.
“The area is 52km from Khowai township and we found gas coming out of the ground near Labancherra, a local stream,” he said.
The official added that he informed his superiors for necessary action and ONGC authorities would also be told.
“The local residents were traumatised after they saw gas leaking from under the ground. It caught fire when tested,” he said.
The Telegraph contacted ONGC Tripura asset PRO D. Saraswati but he said he was out of station and declined comment.
However, Bhattacharjee said after the preliminary visit, he suspected a gas deposit to be the source of the leaking gas.
The ONGC has drilled 225 wells in Tripura till date, among which 116 were found to contain gas. ONCG asset manager Gautam Kumar Singha Roy had earlier told reporters that the success ratio in the state in gas exploration is 1:2 against 1:5 elsewhere.
However, the unique composition of the soil and pressure of gas makes it very tough to conduct exploration here.
The ONGC is currently set to start exploration in Trishna Bison National Park and Wildlife Sanctuary in South Tripura district, 92km from here. The project is awaiting wildlife and forest clearance.
Since 1962, the ONGC started drilling in the state and even planned to set up a Rs 5,000 crore gas-based urea fertiliser plant in Khubal area of North Tripura district.
An agreement was signed with a Rajasthan-based firm, Chambal Fertilisers and Chemicals Ltd.
However, shortage of sufficient gas reserves foiled the project.