Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur on Monday directed the local authorities to provide land to state-run Hindustan Salts Ltd to restart mining rock salt in the state, an official said.
The directions were issued after the company’s Chairman-cum-Managing Director S.P. Bansal called on Thakur in Mandi town and urged him to provide land on lease for processing and increasing the production of rock salt from Gumma and Darang mines in Mandi district.
The mines initially started in May 1963. They were closed in January 2011 after the Ministry of Environment and Forests refused to grant non-forest clearance to the company.
After re-commissioning in March 2016, the company aims to extract around 7,000 metric tonnes of salt every year.
As per estimates, the mines have 58 million tonnes of total deposits.
The company has permission to set up a plant for the extraction of rock salt at a cost of Rs 300 crore.