PAC to examine CAG reports on KG Basin, Air India

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Parliament
New Delhi, Sep 23: Parliament's Public Accounts Committee today (Sept 23) decided to take up for examination the government auditor's reports on KG basin and the performance of Air India.

The PAC, at a meeting chaired by BJP leader Murli Manohar Joshi, decided to start examining the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) performance audits of the ''Hydrocarbaon Production Sharing Contracts'' and ''Civil Aviation in India''.

The Committee is yet to draw a schedule for examining the two reports. The two reports were tabled in Parliament on September 8, the last day of the six-week long monsoon session.

The CAG had sharply criticised Reliance Industries and the Oil Ministry for violation of contract over the showpiece KG-D6 gas block and called for revamping the current profit- sharing arrangement that reduces government revenues.

However, the audit report does not quantify how much the government lost when Reliance hiked capital expenditure at the nation's biggest gas field from USD 2.4 billion proposed in 2004 to USD 8.8 billion estimate in 2006.

The CAG had also come down hard on the Civil Aviation Ministry over the decision to acquire 111 planes for Air India through debt, calling it "a recipe for disaster" and also on the merger of the two erstwhile state-run carriers.

It had described the merger of Air India and Indian Airlines as "ill-timed" contending that the exercise was undertaken "strangely from the top (rather than by the perceived needs of both these airlines), with inadequate validation of the financial benefits". The PAC also decided to take up the matter of Indirect Taxes.

PTI

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