55 mines auctioned in 3 years... just 5 mineral blocks are operational!
New Delhi: The government Friday said of the 55 mines that were auctioned in the last three years, five mineral blocks have become operational and two to three more mines will start operation by next month-end.
"In the last three years we have auctioned around 55 mines. Around five (mineral blocks) have been operational. Next fiscal another 15 mines are going to be operational," Mines Secretary Anil Gopishankar Mukim told reporters here.
He further noted that two to three more mines will start operation in the ongoing fiscal.
The Centre had earlier said it was considering granting all approvals, including environmental clearance, to mineral blocks before putting them up for sale, a move that may give a push to the auctions.
The idea is to fast-track auctioning and that issues related to green clearances and land rights are addressed upfront, the government had earlier said.
It has given in-principle approval to provide single clearance for environment and forest to the new lease holders of the 288 mining leases expiring in two years.
Regarding the National Mineral Policy, 2018, which entails thrust on exploration and private sector participation in exploration, he said it is in final stages of approval.
"It (National Mineral Policy, 2018) is in its final stages of approval and final draft is under preparation," he said.
Of the total 53 mines auctioned so far, around Rs 1.83 lakh crore will accrue to the states as revenue over the lease period, the government said last month.
"The additional revenue on account of auction process is Rs 1.43 lakh crore," the government had said.