Mahanadi Coalfields ltd is extremely worried over the rampant coal smuggling in Talcher area and has drawn attention of the state home department. Rampant smuggling of coal in an organised manner is taking place in Talcher coalfield area costing the centre and state dear in terms of revenue.
Significantly, the concerns expressed by MCL comes a couple of days after Union Minister for coal and railways Mr Piyush Goyal had hauled up the Odisha government for failing to facilitate increased production of coal.
It is estimated that fully loaded lorries carry smuggled coal from Talcher on a daily basis. The situation in Talcher is so serious that the CMD of MCL, Mr Anil Kumar Jha met the home secretary Asit Tripathy and sought his intervention.
“There is massive scale coal theft going on in Talcher and I sought the intervention of the state government officers who assured to help” said Mr Jha.
There are nine open cast coal mines where thousand ton of extracted coal are lying in open.There is a scope of coal theft by smugglers thanks to the connivance and it takes place normally in the summer season when there demand coal in the state particularly from the brick sector.
Earlier there used to be a task force of police and mining officers to check the menace, noted reliable sources here. There was also another deterrent in past when the seized coal truck were reffered to state mining department here who went for confiscation.
The power to confiscate has been reportedly withdrawn thus paving the way for unabated theft.A couple of days ago, MCL Jagannath area security guards seized 40 tonne of coal.
Angul SP Mitrabhanu Mahapatra who joined recently said “I received reports of coal theft on mass scale and I am taking measures to curb it. A squad has been formed to crack down on coal smugglers, he added.