New Delhi, November 25 (Agency)
The oil ministry’s proposal to give away key oil and gas producing fields of ONGC’s Mumbai High and Western Offshore Basin to the private sector will progressively undermine state-owned ONGC. EAS Sharma, a well-known former bureaucrat, said this in a letter to the Prime Minister. In a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the former Secretary to the Government of India said that instead of weakening ONGC, the government should adopt a conscious strategy to strengthen its capacity and allow it to buy out debt-ridden companies or pay higher dividends. Instead of being forced, it should be given adequate functional autonomy. Sharma said in the letter that the government’s latest decision to ask ONGC to sell a majority stake in the Mumbai High/Basin/Satellite field will gradually weaken ONGC. This seems to be part of the wrong strategy. He has demanded the government to withdraw this scheme. He said that the method of disinvestment policy has been to first dilute the PSUs and then sell it to private companies.