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Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd (HPCL) will invest Rs 614 crore in the two sugar mills it had bought in Bihar to manufacture ethanol, which will be blended with petrol. HPCL had last year taken the two closed sugar mills from the Bihar government on a 60-year lease for Rs 95 crore.

The two plants will produce 60 kilolitres of ethanol per day, to be used to dope petrol. The two units are likely to be operational by 2010-end.

India has mandated blending of ethanol in petrol to cut the country’s dependence on imported oil. Currently, 5 per cent ethanol is doped in petrol and the percentage may be doubled in coming years.

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