New Delhi: Poor states, which are home to most of the country's coal resources, are poised to benefit from the ongoing auction of coal blocks whose allotments were earlier cancelled by the apex court, Coal secretary Anil Swarup said today.
"Coal block auction gets underway on the fourth day," Swarup said in a tweet Tuesday.
"Windfall in offing. Poor states to reap harvest of coal block auctions," he added.
The mines up for auction Tuesday are Amelia (North) in Madhya Pradesh reserved for the power sector, Ardhagram mine in West Bengal and Chotia mine in Chhattisgarh -- the last two being earmarked for the non-regulated sectors.
The 10 companies in the race for Amelia (North) mine are Adani Power, Bharat Aluminium Co (Balco), Essar Power Madhya Pradesh, GMR Chhattisgarh Energy, GVK Power Goindwal Sahib Ltd, Jaiprakash Power Ventures, Jindal Power, JSW Energy, RattanIndia Power and Reliance Geothermal Power.
The five companies vying for Ardhagram coal mine are Easternrange Coal Mining Pvt Ltd, Monnet Ispat and Energy Ltd, OCL Iron & Steel Ltd, SS Natural Resources Pvt Ltd and Visa Steel Ltd.
The technically qualified bidders for Chotia mines are Balco, Godawari Power & Ispat Ltd, Hindalco Industries, Prakash Industries, Rungta Mines and Ultratech Cement Ltd.
The Amelia (North) mine has extractable reserves of 70.28 million tonnes, Ardhagram has extractable reserves of 19.29 million tonnes while Chotia mine has extractable reserves of 13.57 million tonnes.
The government has put 19 blocks on sale in the first lot. The last day for the auction of first lot of mines is February 22.