Mrunal Manmay Dash

Central PSU, Oil India commenced drilling for oil and natural gas at Kusupur village under Puri’s Gop block on Wednesday.

The installation of the rig was completed recently.

Speaking on the development, Director of Oil India, Dr. BN Sahu, said, “The government had tried to explore oil in Odisha in the 80s too. But they weren’t successful back then. But this is the first well being drilled in the Open Acreage Licensing Policy regime. The production will start if we find adequate stock of oil and natural gas. Then we will transport it through tankers by road and railway.”

“This will be a proud moment for not only Odisha but for the Country as well. If successful, it will put Odisha on the Oil map of the globe,” he added.

After drilling, Oil India will examine all the stones and soil underneath to search for signs of hydrocarbons.

As per Manas Sharma, Director, Exploration & Development, the exploration work will be completed within 90 days.

In 2012, extensive exploratory drilling and surveys were carried out with an investment of Rs 1248 crore, including Rs 220 crore in seismic surveys, at five coastal blocks and eight districts i.e. Puri, Khordha, Cuttack, Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapara, Jajpur, Bhadrak, and Balasore.

After Oil India found proof of crude oil in the Mahanadi Basin near Konark last year, the Central government PSU took eight acres of land from 37 land owners in Kusupur on lease for three years to explore the quantity and quality of underground oil.

(Reported By Sanjay Pati, OTV)