Kolkata: The eastern metropolis is likely to get Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) by end of this year, which would facilitate vehicles running on greener fuel, an official said on Tuesday.
As a part of the 'Pradhan Mantri Urja Ganga' project, the Central government owned Gail (India) Limited was entrusted to develop city gas distribution (CGD) network in six cities - Patna, Jamshedpur, Ranchi, Bhubaneswar, Cuttack and Kolkata.
However, state owned Greater Calcutta Gas Supply Corporation (GCGSC) was earlier authorised for city gas distribution in Kolkata and surrounding areas. Subsequently, it was decided the CGD in the eastern metropolis would be developed jointly.
A joint venture (JV) company, Bengal Gas Company Ltd, has been formed for developing the city gas distribution, said Gail (India) Limited's Chief General Manager S. Bairagi at a road show for promoting 10th City Gas Distribution bidding round here.
Incidentally, the gas major has been setting up Jagdishpur-Haldia-Bokaro-Dhamra pipeline to bring natural gas to eastern India.
He indicated that before the pipeline connects Kolkata, the JV would try to transport gas through roadways to the eastern metropolis.
"Due to land acquisition issues, we are planning to put up CNG stations at the retail outlets of oil marketing companies (OMCs). We shall try to open CNG stations this year itself if we get space at the outlets. The same model we have followed in Bhubaneswar and Cuttack. We may use road transport till the pipeline connects the place," Bairagi said.
The estimated investment in first five years in Kolkata city gas project would be Rs 5,200 crore, the official said.
The JV would distribute CNG and piped natural gas in the City of Joy and part of Howrah, Hooghly, Nadia and North and South 24 Parganas in West Bengal.
Petroleum and Natural Gas Regulatory Board (PNGRB) member S. Garg said CNG is 60 per cent cheaper than petrol and 45 per cent than diesel.