State oil unions begin indefinite strike

State oil unions begin indefinite strike
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First Published: Wed, Jan 07 2009. 09 48 AM IST
Updated: Wed, Jan 07 2009. 09 48 AM IST
New Delhi: Defying high court orders, oil PSU executives on Wednesday began their indefinite strike for higher wages, affecting gas supplies on the main trunk pipeline but aviation services were normal.
“Our strike began at 0600 hrs this morning. There is full compliance in all companies except HPCL,” Oil Sector Officers’ Association president Amit Kumar said.
The strike resulted in shutting down of gas supplies on Hajira-Vijaipur- Jagdishpur pipeline -- a phenomena that gas transporter GAIL blamed on the shutting of gas production by ONGC.
“There was no supplies from ONGC and we have to shut down the pipeline,” GAIL chairman UD Choubey said.
“Aviation services were not impacted by the strike,” Indian Oil chairman Sarthak Behuria said.
On Tuesday petroleum secretary RS Pandey had said crude oil output of Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) and Oil India Ltd would not be hit but operations at three refineries may be partly affected by the agitation.
A senior official at Indian Oil Corp, who did not want to be named, said the strike would hit its 260,000 barrel per day (bpd) Koyali refinery, the 240,000 bpd Panipat refinery, the 160,000 bpd Mathura refinery and the 120,000 bpd Haldia refinery.
Unions at state-run oil firms often call strikes, but in recent years they have withdrawn the agitation before any dent in energy supplies.
Private refiners Reliance Industries and Essar Oil are expected to continue normal operations and officials say the government may turn to them for supplies if needed.
The impact of any supply disruption would be partly offset by weaker demand for diesel as tens of thousands of truckers have been on a nationwide strike since Monday.
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First Published: Wed, Jan 07 2009. 09 48 AM IST
More Topics: Oil | Strike | State-run oil companies | Wages | NTPC |