New Delhi: State-owned explorer Oil India posted  11.7 percent growth in its quarterly net profit and said it will give free shares and a special dividend to shareholders.

Net profit for the October-December quarter rose to Rs 1,013.98 crore compared to Rs 907.98 crore in the same period a year ago, the company said in a statement here.

Oil India (OIL) said higher crude oil and natural gas production offset a three-fold jump in the company's fuel subsidy outgo.

Upstream oil companies like OIL meet a part of the revenues that fuel retailers lose on selling diesel, domestic LPG and kerosene at government-controlled rates.

OIL paid Rs 1,853.03 crore subsidy in Q3, 231.73 percent higher than outgo of Rs 558.59 crore a year ago.

"During the period the subsidy shared by upstream oil PSU was 37.91 percent of total under recovery, which has adversely affected the profitability of the company during the period," the statement said.

India's second largest state-run explorer said it will give a second interim dividend of Rs 10 per share and give three shares for every two shares held. It had earlier announced Rs 25 per share dividend in December. The bonus share and special dividend come ahead of government's share sale in the company.

The government plans to sell a part of its 78.4 percent stake in OIL in the share sale, the dates of which have not yet been decided.

OIL said its Board of Directors on Saturday agreed to issue 3:2 bonus shares - three shares for every two held.

Also, they agreed to enhancing the authorised share capital of the company from Rs 500 crore (50 crore equity shares of Rs 10 each) to Rs 2,000 crore (200 crore equity shares of Rs 10 each).

Total income increased to Rs 2,589.79 crore in Q3 from Rs 2,473.41 crore in the last fiscal.

OIL said it got USD 110.07 per barrel for crude oil it sold in Q3, but after paying for fuel subsidy in form of discounts in crude oil price, its net realisation was USD 57.02 a barrel. This was 15.07 percent lower than USD 67.14 a barrel net realisation in third quarter last year.

It said crude oil production in Q3 was up 2.8 percent to 0.962 million tonnes. Crude oil production during nine months of 2011-12 fiscal was 8.96 percent higher at 2.918 million tonnes.

Natural gas output at 676 million cubic meters is higher by 9.74 percent compared to 616 mmcmd during Q3 FY 2011.

(Agencies)