Coal imports by the country’s power industry reduced by nearly 15 per cent during April-May this year in view of increased supplies from state miner Coal India Ltd (CIL), Coal Minister Piyush Goyal said on Wednesday.

This detail was provided by Goyal here while launching his ministry’s Coal Mine Surveillance and Management System (CMSMS) and the mobile App “Khan Prahari” designed to prevent pilferage of coal and its illegal mining.

“During April and May 2018, there has been a reduction of 14.7 per cent in coal imports solely by the power sector,” the Minister said.

“Instead, CIL despatch to the power sector during the first quarter of the fiscal stood at 122.84 million tonnes (MT), while it had supplied 106.46 MT in the same period last year. So 16 MT more have been despatched which is an increase of 17.9 per cent,” he added.

Earlier this week, CIL announced that the number of power stations having critical stock has come down from 30 at the beginning of the fiscal to 16 as of June 2018.

Of the overall coal supplies of the company during the first quarter ending June, supplies to the power sector accounted for 80 per cent and the state miner said that a request has been made to thermal power plants to boost their coal stocks.

Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of the event, Goyal refuted reports of shortage of coal in Delhi’s power plants.

“The Delhi government recently revised upwards their demand for coal and have fulfilled these. All Delhi power plants are being refuelled and even as I speak supplies are on their way,” he said.

“Delhi has no coal shortage. What is required is the upgradation of Delhi distribution systems to be able to cope in future with high peak demand of 6,500-7,000 megawatt,” he added.