Real Estate Update

July 29, 2005

Disaster At Bombay High

A major fire broke out on Bombay High North ("BHN") one of the Oil and Natural Gas Corporation's ("ONGC") offshore oil-drilling platforms at Bombay High, on Wednesday, July 27, 2005. Bombay High, India's largest offshore oil field discovered in the Gulf of Cambay in 1965, produces 14 per cent of India's oil requirements and accounts for 38 per cent of all domestic production amounting to approximately 260,000 barrels of oil every day.

The disaster occurred when ONGC's multi-purpose vessel Samudra Suraksha (the "MPV") lost control while engaging in a medical evacuation operation. The MPV collided with BHN and instantly damaged the oil and gas lines setting off an inferno. The MPV and BHN were consumed by the conflagration in less than two hours. As of the time of this update, up to 14 personnel are feared dead even as search and rescue operations are underway.

The resultant oil spill from BHN has extended to 10 nautical miles in the easterly direction towards Mumbai. The oil spill, aggravated by rough seas caused by unprecedented torrential rains in the region, is in danger of spreading fast. Measures to neutralize the spill are presently in progress.

BHN is insured for a sum of $ 195 million and the MPV is insured for $60 million. A detailed damage assessment has estimated that restoring a new platform in place of BHN would cost about $ 300 million. The Government of India has set up a three-member committee headed by former ONGC Chairman, S.K. Manglik, to probe the cause of the fire. According to the Government, the aforementioned committee would be assisted in its investigation by Royal Dutch Shell.

The immediate impact of the disaster is the loss of crude oil production of 110, 000 barrels per day. According to the Union Minister for Petroleum, Mani Shankar Aiyar, 70% of the production loss due to the disaster should be restored within the next four weeks.


Roshan Thomas Vikram K Raj


The contents of this hotline should not be construed as legal opinion. View detailed disclaimer.

This Hotline provides general information existing at the time of preparation. The Hotline is intended as a news update and Nishith Desai Associates neither assumes nor accepts any responsibility for any loss arising to any person acting or refraining from acting as a result of any material contained in this Hotline. It is recommended that professional advice be taken based on the specific facts and circumstances. This Hotline does not substitute the need to refer to the original pronouncements.

This is not a Spam mail. You have received this mail because you have either requested for it or someone must have suggested your name. Since India has no anti-spamming law, we refer to the US directive, which states that a mail cannot be considered Spam if it contains the sender's contact information, which this mail does. In case this mail doesn't concern you, please unsubscribe from mailing list.




Proud Moments

Benchmark Litigation Asia-Pacific: Tier 1 for Government & Regulatory and Tax
2020, 2019, 2018

Legal500 Asia-Pacific: Tier 1 for Tax, Investment Funds, Labour & Employment and TMT
2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012

Chambers and Partners Asia Pacific: Band 1 for Employment, Lifesciences, Tax and TMT
2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015

IFLR1000: Tier 1 for Private Equity and Project Development: Telecommunications Networks.
2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, 2014

AsiaLaw Asia-Pacific Guide 2020: Tier 1 (Outstanding) for TMT, Labour & Employment, Private Equity, Regulatory and Tax

FT Innovative Lawyers Asia Pacific 2019 Awards: NDA ranked 2nd in the Most Innovative Law Firm category (Asia-Pacific Headquartered)

RSG-Financial Times: India’s Most Innovative Law Firm
2019, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014

NDA Connect

Connect with us at events, 
conferences and seminars.