New Delhi: In a major step to boost mining sector, Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the auction process of 41 coal blocks for commercial mining through video conference. It was part of the series of announcements made by the Government of India, under the AatmaNirbhar Bharat Abhiyan. The Coal Ministry in association with FICCI launched the process for auction of these coal mines. A two stage electronic auction process is being adopted for allocation of the coal mines.
PM Narendra Modi said that India will overcome the COVID -19 Pandemic and the nation will turn this crisis into an opportunity. He said that this crisis has taught India the lesson of becoming Self-Reliant.
PM Modi said an AatmaNirbhar Bharat means reducing dependency on imports, and saving foreign currency on imports. It entails that India develop resources domestically so that the country does not have to rely on imports. It also means becoming the biggest exporters of the commodities that we now import.
PM said that it will mark the beginning of lakhs of employment opportunities for the youth. He said that it was not only the launching of the auction of commercial coal mining but also freeing the coal sector from decades of lockdown. He stressed the irony that India, with the world’s fourth largest coal reserve and being the second largest producer, is also the second largest coal importer.
The Prime Minister said that the steps taken towards commercial mining will be very helpful to eastern and central India by providing the local population with employment near their homes.
PM said that the Government has taken a decision to spend 50 thousand crore rupees on creating infrastructure for coal extraction and transportation, which will also create employment opportunities.
Pralhad Joshi, Union Coal and Mines Minister termed the occasion as historic and said that India’s energy demands have been rising nearly 5 percent per annum. India needs all sources of energy. He said that with coal having nearly 50% share in total energy supply top the country, Coal Ministry has major responsibility to make sure that coal is made available when demanded. He added that Coal India Limited has played a key role in energy sector.
In this auction process, 41 coal mines are on offer which includes fully explored and partially explored mines. These include 4 coking coal mines which are fully explored mines. These coal mines are located in states of Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Odisha. The auction process will be a two-stage tender process with technical and financial bidding.
Dr Sangita Reddy, President, FICCI said that the Commercial mining of coal launched by Hon’ble PM will help meet the country’s energy needs, reduce dependence on imports, modernise the sector and generate jobs.
Dr Reddy said “This landmark reform will unlock country’s natural resources, stimulate the economy and catalyze India’s path to a 5-trillion dollar economy. FICCI is happy to be the industry partner at the launch of this major initiative.”
M. Nagaraju, JS, Ministry of Coal made detailed presentation on the auction process of coal mines for commercial mining. N. Chandrashekaran, Chairman, Tata Sons, Anil Agarwal, Chairman and Founder, Vedanta Group joined the event virtually as speakers for the event along with Coal India Limited and its subsidiaries.