Section 16 in The Petroleum and Natural Gas Regulatory Board Act, 2006

Title: Authorisation

Description: No entity shall— (a) lay, build, operate or expand any pipeline as a common carrier or contract carrier, (b) lay, build, operate or expand any city or local natural gas distribution network, without obtaining authorisation under this Act: Provided that an entity,-- (i) laying, building, operating or expanding any pipeline as common carrier or contract carrier; or (ii) laying, building, operating or expanding any city or local natural gas distribution network, immediately before the appointed day shall be deemed to have such authorisation subject to the provisions of this Chapter, but any change in the purpose or usage shall require separate authorisation granted by the Board.

Title: Application for authorization

Description: (1) An entity which is laying, building, operating or expanding, or which proposes to lay, build, operate or expand, a pipeline as a common carrier or contract carrier shall apply in writing to the Board for obtaining an authorisation under this Act: Provided that an entity laying, building, operating or expanding any pipeline as common carrier or contract carrier authorised by the Central Government at any time before the appointed day shall furnish the particulars of such activities to the Board within six months from the appointed day. (2) An entity which is laying, building, operating or expanding, or which proposes to lay, build, operate or expand, a city or local natural gas distribution network shall apply in writing for obtaining an authorisation under this Act: Provided that an entity laying, building, operating or expanding any city or local natural gas distribution network authorised by the Central Government at any time before the appointed day shall furnish the particulars of such activities to the Board within six months from the appointed day. (3) Every application under sub-section (1) or sub-section (2) shall be made in such form and in such manner and shall be accompanied with such fee as the Board may, by regulations, specify. (4) Subject to the provisions of this Act and consistent with the norms and policy guidelines laid down by the Central Government, the Board may either reject or accept an application made to it, subject to such amendments or conditions, if any, as it may think fit. (5) In the case of refusal or conditional acceptance of an application, the Board shall record in writing the grounds for such rejection or conditional acceptance, as the case may be.

Title: Publicity of applications

Description: When an application for registration for marketing notified petroleum, petroleum products and natural gas, or for establishing and operating a liquefied natural gas terminal, or for establishing storage facilities for petroleum, petroleum products or natural gas exceeding such capacity as may be specified by regulations, is accepted whether absolutely or subject to conditions or limitations, the Board shall, as soon as may be, cause such acceptance to be known to the public in such form and manner as may be provided by regulations.

Title: Grant of authorization

Description: (1) When, either on the basis of an application for authorisation for laying, building, operating or expanding a common carrier or contract carrier or for laying, building, operating or expanding a city or local natural gas distribution network is received or on suo motu basis, the Board forms an opinion that it is necessary or expedient to lay, build, operate or expand a common carrier or contract carrier between two specified points, or to lay, build, operate or expand a city or local natural gas distribution network in a specified geographic area, the Board may give wide publicity of its intention to do so and may invite applications from interested parties to lay, build, operate or expand such pipelines or city or local natural gas distribution network. (2) The Board may select an entity in an objective and transparent manner as specified by regulations for such activities.

Title: Declaring, laying, building, etc., of common carrier or contract carrier and city or local natural gas distribution network

Description: (1) If the Board is of the opinion that it is necessary or expedient, to declare an existing pipeline for transportation of petroleum, petroleum products and natural gas or an existing city or local natural gas distribution network, as a common carrier or contract carrier or to regulate or allow access to such pipeline or network, it may give wide publicity of its intention to do so and invite objections and suggestions within a specified time from all persons and entities likely to be affected by such decision. (2) For the purposes of sub-section (1), the Board shall provide the entity owning, the pipeline or network an opportunity of being heard and fix the terms and conditions subject to which the pipeline or network may be declared as a common carrier or contract carrier and pass such orders as it deems fit having regard to the public interest, competitive transportation rates and right of first use. (3) The Board may, after following the procedure as specified by regulations under section 19 and sub-sections (1) and (2), by notification,-- (a) declare a pipeline or city or local natural gas distribution network as a common carrier or contract carrier; or (b) authorise an entity to lay, build, operate or expand a pipeline as a common carrier or contract carrier; or (c) allow access to common carrier or contract carrier or city or local natural gas distribution network; or (d) authorise an entity to lay, build, operate or expand a city or local natural gas distribution network. (4) The Board may decide on the period of exclusivity to lay, build, operate or expand a city or local natural gas distribution network for such number of years as it may by order, determine in accordance with the principles laid down by the regulations made by it, in a transparent manner while fully protecting the consumer interests. (5) For the purposes of this section, the Board shall be guided by the objectives of promoting competition among entities, avoiding infructuous investment, maintaining or increasing supplies or for securing equitable distribution or ensuring adequate availability of petroleum, petroleum products and natural gas throughout the country and follow such principles as the Board may, by regulations, determine in carrying out its functions under this section.