Cairn Oil & Gas, a subsidiary of the Vedanta group, has announced a new oil discovery in a key exploration block in Barmer, very close to its prolific Rajasthan block RJ-ON-90/1.

The operator, in a stock exchange filing this week, said it notified the Indian Directorate General of Hydrocarbons (DGH) and the country's Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas on an oil Discovery —named ‘Durga’, in exploratory well WM-Basal DD Fan-1, that was spud in the RJ-ONHP-2017/1 onshore tract.

“During the drilling of the well, four hydrocarbon zones were encountered in the Dharvi Dungar (DD) formation of late Palaeocene to early Eocene age. Further evaluation is being carried out to assess potential commerciality of the discovery,” it said.

The block was awarded to Cairn in October 2018 and is one of the 41 tracts awarded to it in India’s first round of open acreage and licensing policy (OALP-1)

The WM-Basal DD Fan-1 is the second exploratory well drilled in the Block RJ-ONHP-2017/1 to a depth of 2615 metres MDRT (measured depth below rotary table), the company added.

Cairn holds 100% participating interest in the onshore Rajasthan block.

The company produces more than 150,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day from its prolific Rajasthan block and aims to double production from its Indian operations to 500,000 boepd over the next few years.

Cairn —India’s largest private oil and gas operator recently said it aims to achieve net zero emissions by 2050 while pressing ahead with a $4 billion investment plan.