Lanco gives up on CBM

Vol 13, PW 23 (06 May 10) News in Brief

Lanco Infratech has lost hope with the Indian exploration business after the government decision to block its provisional award of two of 10 CBM blocks offered in the last CBM licensing round.

Instead, the Hyderabad-based infrastructure company has decided to focus its energy on growing its power generation business. “I don’t see any hope of us getting the (CBM) blocks now,” confesses a senior company source.

On April 14, the Empowered Committee of Secretaries which met to decide the fate of seven blocks provisionally won by Gujarat-based Deep Industries (two in alliance with Lanco) decided to award them to the second ranking bidder. “The law ministry favoured the award of the blocks to Deep,” adds our source.

“I don’t know how the oil ministry could ignore the law ministry’s opinion, but it did.” At one stage, Deep and Lanco considered taking the government to court over its decision to overturn their provisional awards, but it’s unclear if they still will.