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Drone attacks strike major Saudi oilfield facility

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Saudi Arabia: Drones attacked the world’s largest oil processing facility in Saudi Arabia and a major oilfield operated by Saudi Aramco early on Saturday, the kingdom’s interior ministry said, sparking a huge fire at a processor vital to global energy supplies.

No one immediately claimed responsibility for the attacks on Abqaiq and the Khurais oil field, but Yemen’s Houthi rebels have previously launched drone assaults deep inside of the kingdom.

It was unclear whether there were any injuries in the attacks, or whether they would affect the country’s oil production. They are, however, likely to heighten tensions in the region, where Saudi Arabia and Iran are effectively fighting a proxy war in Yemen, and Tehran is at loggerheads with Washington over the latter’s withdrawal from its nuclear deal with world powers.

Online videos apparently shot in Abqaiq included the sound of gunfire in the background. Smoke rose over the skyline and flames could be seen in the distance at the oil processing facility.

The fires began after the sites were targeted by drones, the interior ministry said in a statement carried by the state-run Saudi Press Agency. It said an investigation was underway.

Saudi Aramco describes its Abqaiq facility as the largest crude oil stabilisation plant in the world. The facility is thought to be able to process up to 7m barrels of crude a day.

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Hyderabad based GVK Group reportedly under government scanner

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Mumbai: The GVK Group, which is in locked in a legal battle with the Adani Group on stake sale in its flagship Mumbai International Airport (MIAL), on Tuesday said it has received a notice from the corporate affairs ministry (MCA), seeking some details about the airport operator.

This comes at a time when the Hyderabad-based diversified GVK Power & Infrastructure Limited, which owns 50.5 percent stake in the MIAL, is in the process of hiking its stake in the airport arm by acquiring 23.5 per cent additional stake from Bidvest and ACSA.

The MCA notice, according to sources, is based on a whistleblower complaint to MCA with regard to alleged ‘diversion of funds’ from some of the GVK Group companies.

MCA has initiated an inspection of the books of 11 entities, which include GVK Power & Infrastructure, Mumbai International Airport, GVK Jaipur Expressway Pvt and GVK Power. It has also ordered an inspection of the books of Navi Mumbai International Airport Pvt – the under construction airport at Navi Mumbai.

These companies are located in different jurisdictions — Hyderabad, Bengaluru, Rajasthan and Mumbai — of the Registrar of Companies and MCA has sent a physical inspection letter to each of these companies, sources said.

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