RNRL challenges government role, seeks dismissal of petition

RNRL challenges government role, seeks dismissal of petition

New Delhi: Anil Ambani’s Reliance Natural Resources Ltd (RNRL) on Friday urged the Supreme Court to dismiss a petition by the Union government, arguing that the state had no role in the legal spat between RNRL and Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) over the pricing and supply of gas from the Krishna-Godavari basin.

The government had filed a petition in July asserting that the Bombay high court judgement of 15 June had hurt its sovereign rights over natural gas, and sought to set at nought a family arrangement between the estranged Ambani brothers, Anil and Mukesh, over its supply.

But in a revised petition on 1 September, the government restricted itself to asserting its sovereign rights over gas and clarified that it no longer wanted the family arrangement scrapped.

RNRL argued in its petition on Friday that as the government was an intervenor and not a party to the dispute in the high court, it could only make submissions and not file petitions.

RNRL reiterated that the gas which belongs to the government under the production sharing contract (PSC) is completely outside the purview of the dispute between RIL and RNRL.

While the government may fix the price for the gas at $4.2 (Rs202.44) per million British thermal unit (mmBtu) for valuation purposes, RIL could sell at a lower price, RNRL argued.

RIL was bound to supply gas to RNRL at $2.34 per mmBtu, and this would not affect the government’s rights to fix gas prices, it said.

The family arrangement between the Ambani brothers does not undermine the rights and interests of the government or violate the PSC, it added.

The Supreme Court will hear the government’s petition and related matters on 20 October.