The Coal Ministry on Wednesday claimed that there was no shortage of coal in the country and there is enough coal in the country to feed power plants, said the Union Coal Minister Pralhad Joshi.
There was some interruption in the supply of coal last month due to increased demand for power and less power generation by imported coal-based power plants, the Minister said in a written reply in Lok Sabha today.
The coal stock at power plants had depleted to 7.2 MT in the first week of October, but subsequently, it was increased to 16.74 MT by November 25, the Minister informed the lower house.
Coal India Limited (CIL) has dispatched around 54 Million Tonnes (MT) more coal during April – October this year in comparison to the same period of last year, he said. “CIL has dispatched 291.72 MT coal during this period, against 237.75 MT during the same period of last fiscal. The coal stock at CIL pithead was 40.23 MT as on 08.10.2021 and 32.30 MT as on November 24, 2011,” the Minister said.
The government has also revised its coal mining strategy and initiated auctioning of commercial mining on a revenue-sharing basis to increase the availability of coal in the country. “A total of 2 tranches have been successfully completed and the third Tranche is currently under process. From these two tranches total of 28 coal mines have been successfully auctioned for which Vesting orders have been signed for 27 coal mines,” the Minister said.
The government has further allowed the sale of excess coal production from captive mines on payment of an additional amount, which would make coal available to power plants, the Minister said.
“In order to expedite the process for conducting auctions and to carry out more rounds of the auction in a year, Centre has planned a mechanism of rolling auctions of coal mines,” he said.