16 Odisha Mines To Be Auctioned By March 2019: Minister

Picture Courtesy: www.orissaminerals.gov.in

Bhubaneswar: Steel and Mines Minister Prafulla Mallick on Tuesday said that the Odisha government will soon auction 16 mines after getting the required approval from the Centre.

Ten among these are iron ore mines.

Talking to the media at the State Secretariat here, the Minister said, “25 mines had got a stay order from the Revisional Authority while lease sof six mines were cancelled. These mines are yet to deposit their fine in accordance with the Supreme Court’s order.”

The collectors concerned have been asked to initiate certificate case against them to collect the fine amount and the exercise has already begun, he said.

On the fate of the six mines, Mallick said that these would be auctioned once again following the normal procedure if there are no legal impediments.

“We have written to the Centre seeking approval to auction 16 mines, whose lease have expired. The auction process is likely to begin by December,” he said.

Notably, Union Coal Secretary Anil Mukim on August had informed that about 17-18 mines, including those of iron ore in Odisha, would be auctioned this year.

“Odisha is the mining capital of the country. I have been given to understand by the state government that around 17-18 mines would be put up for auction this year,” Mukim told mediapersons after a meeting with Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik at the State Secretariat on August 10.

The Union Coal Secretary further said several projects have been approved through the District Mineral Foundation (DMF), which has over Rs 5,000 crore in its kitty.

According to available data, Odisha, a leading state in DMF collection, had generated around Rs 5,013 crore till July 2018. So far, 8163 projects in the physical infrastructure, irrigation, energy, watershed, afforestation and other sectors have been sanctioned and Rs 3,047 crore allotted against these projects.