Odisha to auction 7 more mines
Bhubaneswar: After auctioning 19 Iron Ore and Manganese mines, the Odisha government is planning to auction another 7 mining blocks by 31st March, Odisha steel & mines minister Prafulla Mallick informed the Odisha Asembly on Monday.
These 7 mining blocks include 3 Iron Ore blocks, 2 Limestone, one Manganese and one Graphite mines. The 3 Iron Ore blocks are Ghoruburhani-Sagasahi, Kamalanga (West) and Netrabandha in Sundargarh district. Similarly, two Lime stone mines are Khatakur (west) (Sundargarh) and Kotameta Limestone mines in Malkangiri district. Apart from these, Lesanrda Pacheri Maganese Mines in Keonjhar and Jagadalapur (Rayagada) Graphite mines will be put under the hammer.
Answering another question by BJP MLA Mohan Charan Majhi, the minister said that the Odisha government has reserved 5 mines for the companies who have set up industries in the state.
Last week, the Odisha government has concluded auction of 19 Iron Ore and Manganese mines, off which steel major JSW steel has bagged maximum 4 blocks Nuagaon, Narayanposhi, Ganua and Jajang Iron Ore mines with combined Iron Ore reserve of 1130 million tonnes. Apart from JSW, global steel giant Arcelor Mittal has bagged the Thakurani Iron Ore block with estimated Iron Ore reserve of 179 million tonnes.
In December 2019, the state government had cancelled auction of 29 mining blocks including 12 Iron Ore, 2 Manganese and 6 Iron & Manganese blocks, after complaints of irregularities and invited fresh bids for 19 blocks. The government is likely to invite bids for the rest 10 blocks before March.
As per the amended Mining & Minerals (Development & Regulation) Act 2015, the lease period all merchant mines will expire by March 31st 2020.