State-run Coal India Ltd. (CIL), Chairman, S Narsing Rao has said that the company will not allow auction of shale gas block in its command area as the coal major has decided to explore and extract such shale gas blocks by itself or in joint venture with other companies, as per the media reports.
"We have decided to explore and extract shale gas in our command area by ourselves or in JV with companies we select. At CIL, we do not want those blocks to be auctioned by the government to any other party. CIL, in conjunction with the ministry of coal, will object in case the government auctions such blocks under our command areas," Rao told media.
This decision of CIL would take away a number of shale gas reserves in Damodar basin, Bengal basin and in the Assam-Arakan basin, which the petroleum ministry is planning to auction later this year.
On the other hand, a senior company official said, "The government is, in fact, planning to auction only those blocks which fall outside the jurisdiction of CIL. Blocks that hold coal as well as shale gas will not be auctioned, this is expected to leave out large reserves of the gas."