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Govt proposes panel to examine applications for coal mines

The Coal Ministry has proposed a panel to examine the applications for the coal blocks to be alloted to power producers through tariff-based bidding. The panel, to be chaired by advisor (projects), is also expected to include representatives from the Power Ministry and the Central Electricity Authority (CEA).

‘A technical committee...is proposed to be constituted for examination/evaluation/recommendation of applications received in the Ministry of Coal, to earmark the area containing coal to the selected state governments for allocation to the company or corporations awarded a power project on the basis of competitive bids for tariff,’ according to a Coal Ministry memorandum.
The proposed terms of reference of the panel are also to ‘recommend the name of suitable applicants to the inter- ministerial committee’.
The government has identified four coal blocks to be allocated to power producers on tariff-based bidding and had invited applications for it on 20 December.

The procedure for the allocation of area containing coal through auction by competitive bidding is under the process, the coal ministry had earlier said.

Under the newly-initiated bidding policy, 17 coal mines — 14 for power and three for mining — were allocated to state government companies and Central PSUs. Coal Minister Sriprakash Jaiswal had earlier said that the much-awaited auction of coal blocks may
happen in March.
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