The Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) has begun extracting oil from the Bengal Basin, the 8th producing basin of India. The event was marked by switching on the Sucker Rod Pump (SRP) by a dignitary. The Asokenagar-1 well is located in the 24 Paragana district. This well completed as an oil producer under Early-Monetization Plan issued by Government of India. This means the ONGC has discovered and put to production seven out of the eight producing basins of India covering 83 per cent of established oil & gas reserves.
The first hydrocarbon consignment produced during well testing was sent to Indian Oil Corporation Ltd’s (IOCL) Haldia Oil Refinery on 5 November 2020.
ONGC has already begun more geoscientific activities in the Bengal basin under the Open Acreage Licensing Policy (OALP). These activities include an appraisal programme of Asokenagar discovery for an area of about 739 sq. km. including 3D seismic, Low-Frequency Passive Seismic (LFPS) Survey and drilling of two wells, besides acquiring roughly 1300 LKM of 2D, 2900 SKM of 3D and drilling of 13 wells in the next three years in the newly awarded acreages. Bengal Basin is spread across nearly 1.22 lakh square kilometres, with nearly two-thirds of it falling under the waters of the Bay of Bengal. So far, ONGC has invested Rs. 3361 Crore to explore hydrocarbon in the Bengal Basin. Rs. 425 Crore is scheduled to be spent on exploration activities in the basin in the next two years.
ONGC is India’s largest oil and gas producer contributing 72 per cent of the country’s hydrocarbon production.