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Megha Engineering & Infrastructures Ltd (MEIL) on Wednesday said its first indigenously-made oil drilling rig has started operation at Kalol oil fields in Ahmedabad, Gujarat.

The rig, which became operational on Wednesday, is part of an order worth Rs 6,000 crore for 47 drilling rigs.

MEIL is the first company in private sector to manufacture and use rigs used in oil and fuel extraction with advanced technology, a company statement said.

As part of the Centre's Make in India programme, MEIL has manufactured these rigs for the first time in the country, it added.

With a capacity of 1500 HP ( horse power) these rigs can easily dig oil wells up to 4000 meter (4 kilometers) depth from the ground surface. These rigs have a life span of about 40 years.

In 2019, MEIL received a tender worth Rs 6,000 crore to manufacture 47 drilling rigs.

As part of this, first rig was brought into use at the oil fields in Ahmedabad, it said. The remaining 46 rigs are in various stages of manufacture.

Of the remaining 46 rigs, 2 are in assembly stage in oil fields of Rajahmundry in Andhra Pradesh, while the remaining rigs will be supplied to ONGC oil fields in Assam, Tripura and Tamil Nadu.

MEIL Vice President P Rajesh Reddy said the company is very proud to produce first rig under Make in India programme with advanced native technology and supply to ONGC.

This programme will go a long way in improving the domestic economy by increasing domestic oil production and reducing imports, the company said.

Reddy said MEIL has become a hope for India in oil and fuel extraction rigs, which till now was mostly dependent on other countries' machinery.