Bhubaneswar, June 18:
Union coal secretary Anil Swarup on Thursday said Odisha would get about Rs.45,000 crore in next 25-30 years from the ongoing coal auction process.
He said if all the mines are explored, the state would avail an estimated amount of about Rs.45,000 crore during that period.
Stating that Odisha would get the amount only when mines are explored, Swarup said if there are more reserves of coal, the state would get more revenue.
“It all depends on stock or reserve of minerals in the mines,” Swarup told media persons here after reviewing various issues of coal mines belonging to Mahanadi Coal Fields Ltd. (MCL).
Swarup’s estimate came in contrast to Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan’s claim earlier that Odisha would receive Rs.2 lakh crore from the coal auction.
The coal secretary denied rejecting any request of the Odisha government regarding allocation of coal blocks to Odisha Thermal Power Corporation (OTPCL).
“We have not rejected any request of the state government. We have certain process that needs to be followed. We don’t allocate blocks on the basis of letters. We are going as per the process,” said the coal secretary.
He said the request of the state government to allocate coal blocks to its PSUs through nomination route would be considered, if the requests come through proper process.
“We are soon going to announce the next lot of coal blocks. If the state government applies, we will consider,” said Swarup.
The Odisha government had demanded allocation of Chhendipada-I and Chhendipada-II coal blocks in favour of OTPCL, which has proposed to set up a 2,400 MW power plant at Kamakshya Nagar in Dhenkanal district.
But the government claimed that the coal ministry has turned down the request. The government has also proposed to allocate coal blocks to the Odisha Mining Corporation (OMC).
The coal secretary said the coal production of MCL is expected to increase to 150 million tonne this year from 120 million tonne last year.
“While MCL had produced 120 mt last year, we are expecting that it would produce 150 mt this year as the production growth rate is 14% more than last year,” said Swarup.
The total production across the country was 494 mt last year.
Expressing satisfaction over the Jharsuguda-Barpali railway line, Swarup said that the project is expected to be over by this time around next year which would help evacuate 20 million tonne coal through the route to various industrial sources.
Odisha chief secretary Gokul Chandra Pati said, the bottlenecks of 11 projects of MCL that include land acquisition, rehabilitation and forest clearance were also discussed.
(IANS with added inputs from OST Bureau)