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Govt to de-allocate another coal mine, deduct bank guarantee of two

Press Trust of India
Sep 17, 2012 at 08:16pm IST

New Delhi: Moving ahead with action against erring coal block allottees, the government on Monday decided to de-allocate one more mine and deduct bank guarantees of two others even as the ministerial panel recommended forfeiture of bank guarantee of a block allotted to Hindalco and Tata Power.

The decision to de-allocate Gourangdih ABC coal block, jointly given to JSW Steel, a company owned by Sajjan Jindal, brother of Congress MP Naveen Jindal and Himachal EMTA was taken on the recommendation of the Inter-Ministerial Group (IMG).

The panel is scrutinising 29 out of 58 cases that were served showcause notices for non-development of mines during prescribed timeline.

Government to de-allocate another coal mine

The IMG is scrutinising 29 out of 58 cases that were served showcause notices for non-development of mines during prescribed timeline.

"I have approved the IMG's recommendations given on Friday and will take a call on others," Coal Minister Sriprakash Jaiswal said.

The IMG had on Friday recommended de-allocation of the Gourangdih ABC mine, given jointly to JSW Steel and Himachal EMTA in 2009, having an extractable reserve of 61.54 million tonnes (MT).

With this the total number of blocks approved for de-allocation has gone up to five out of total seven recommended by the IMG so far. The government has also approved deducting bank guarantee in case of five mines out of total eight recommended by the IMG so far.

Meanwhile, the panel decided to recommend deduction of bank guarantee in the case of a mine jointly allotted to Aditya Birla Group's flagship firm Hindalco and Tata Power due to delays in development of the block.

"The IMG today recommended deduction of bank guarantee of Tubed coal block in Jharkhand, allotted to Hindalco and Tata Power in August 2007," an official source said.

The panel could take up only Tubed block for scrutiny on Monday and would meet again on Tuesday to scrutinise another six of seven cases, which failed to adhere to the timeframe for developing the mines given to them, sources said.

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