KOLKATA/GUWAHATI: Brahmaputra Cracker and Polymer Ltd (BCPL), popularly known as the Assam Gas Cracker Project, “is likely to be completed by December 2013”, said Prime Minister Manmohan Singh here on Friday.
He said that the Gas Cracker Project, which was originally scheduled to be completed by April 2012, “is progressing well”.
As the project had been facing time-overruns, the cost of it was revised to Rs. 8,920 crore last year. The original cost of the project, was Rs. 5,460 crore.
The foundation stone of the project, which is coming up at Lepetkata in Upper Assam’s Dibrugarh district, was laid by Singh in April 2006.
However, “acute” shortage of skilled manpower, coupled with unfavourable weather conditions during monsoons, had been putting brakes on the timely commissioning of the project, which has led to cost escalation of it.
The Assam Gas Cracker Project has a dubious distinction as it was the second time in 2006 that a Prime Minister laid the foundation stone of the it, with the previous occasion being in 1994 when then Prime Minister late PV Narishimha Rao laid the foundation stone at Tengaghat in Dibrugarh district, the site which was later abandoned.
BCPL is a joint venture company and GAIL is the lead promoter with 70 per cent equity and rest 30 per cent stake being equally shared by Assam government, Numaligarh Refinery Limited (NRL) and Oil India Ltd (OIL).