GIDC to try for a fresh coal block in Chhattisgarh

The Goa industrial development corporation (GIDC) is trying its best to get a fresh coal block allotted to it even as its last attempt failed. On the other hand, it has also filed a petition in Delhi high court for the recovery of 264 crore paid for land acquisition for the coal block allotted to it in Chhattisgarh in 2009.

The money for land acquisition were paid by the government-appointed developer, K S K Energy Ventures. The GIDC lost Chhattisgarh coal block after Supreme Court order in 2014, cancelled 218 coal block allocations terming them illegal and arbitrary.

A few months ago, chief minister Laxmikant Parsekar had written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking direction to the Union ministry of coal to reimburse the expenditure incurred by GIDC, without any further delay.

The GIDC was allotted a coal block at Gera Pelma, sector III of Raigarh district in Chhattisgarh in 2009. The process of obtaining various permissions required to activate the block, and start coal mining, gained momentum two years later.

The government official said they have had obtained all crucial permissions, particularly an approval of the ministry of environment and forest (MoEF) while a mining licence from Chhattisgarh was awaited when the apex court cancelled the coal blocks, and its hope of commissioning of Chhattisgarh coal block suffered a blow.

What’s disheartening for GIDC is that its renewed efforts to get a coal block in Chhattisgarh did not meet with success, while the Gera Pelma, sector III coal was allotted to Chhatishgarh state power general company ltd, in an allotment process take up after the apex court’s order. The official said they had to wage a legal battle even to be considered eligible to participate in the bidding.

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