NEW DELHI: The Government of India is gearing up for the fourth round of coal blocks allotment auctions . Coal secretary Mr Anil Swarup confirmed the same speaking to the media.
“Coal mines auctions may start within 15 days. The ministry is making all the required arrangements for the same. I cannot guarantee the number of coal blocks that may come under the auctions in the fourth round, as there are a few legal hurdles with the auctioning of some blocks”, coal secretary Anil Swarup said.
“If there aren’t any legal hurdles, about eight to eleven coal blocks may come under the auctions”, he added.
The legal hurdles over the auctioning of the coal mines were due to the cancellation of the earlier coal block allocations by the Supreme court of India last. The apex court commented that the ‘allocation of the coal blocks under the previous UPA government were made without following faithful practices’ while cancelling all the 204 coal block licenses, which were allocated without auctions.
The current NDA government has been auctioning the coal mine blocks which were cancelled by the Supreme court, in various rounds of auction. So far, the three rounds of coal auctions had fetched the Government a total of Rs 3lakh crore, the Business Standard reported.
Though the Government has proposed to auction a total of ten blocks in the third round, only three blocks were allowed to go for the auction due to the legal hurdles. The Government received a total of Rs.4,364 crore in the third round, held in the month of August.
Coal and Power Minister Piyush Goyal said that the ministry is considering the proposal of the fertilizer companies to allow them for the coal block auctions. “The proposal of the fertilizer companies is under consideration and we will take a decision over it in a couple of days. The formalities for the fourth round of auctions are in the last stage and a notification will be released soon”, the minister said in a press conference.