10. Availability of areas for grant of permit, licence or lease.-
(1) Within six months from the date of commencement of this Act, and subsequently at such times as may be considered necessary in this behalf by the administering authority, it shall, by notification in the Official Gazette, declare the parts of the offshore areas which shall be available for grant of reconnaissance permit, exploration licence or production lease.
(2) Any application for the grant of reconnaissance permit, exploration licence or production lease in respect of any area not covered by a notification issued under sub-section (1) shall be deemed to be premature and no application shall be entertained therefor.
(3) Operating rights shall be granted in standard block of five minutes longitude by five minutes latitude and such grant may cover more than one standard block which shall be contiguous.