Millennium Post

SAIL may get a slice in Rajasthan iron ore mine

Steel Authority of India may get a slice of a magnetite mine in Rajasthan's Bhilwara district soon, according to sources.

'SAIL had written to the Rajasthan government way back in 2009. Considering the need, the state had sought union mines ministry's approval to allocate a part of the mine. The entire process is nearing to an end, a source in the mines ministry said.

The state-run steel maker had in December 2009 applied to the Rajasthan government for giving it the mining lease in the Parbanera belt, considering the increased requirement of iron ore to feed its expanded capacity.

SAIL is in the process of expanding its capacity to 23.46 million tonnes per annum by 2012-13 from 14.35 mtpa at present with a whopping investment of around Rs 70,000 crore. It takes around 1.6 million tonnes of iron ore to produce one million tonne steel.

Following SAIL's application, the Rajasthan government had put forward the proposal to union mines ministry for granting mining lease on 871 hectares of area in its favour. The total area of the mine is 3,716.27 hectares.

Meanwhile, the state had allocated 1,557 hectares out of the total mining area to Jindal Saw in January 2011. The area given to Jindal Saw has the potential to produce 180 million tonnes of iron ore.

'[In] February this year, the Rajasthan government had sent SAIL's proposal to the mines ministry for the prior approval of the Centre. In the same month, the mines ministry replied back to the Rajasthan government seeking some clarification,' sources said, adding that the state is likely to reply soon.
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