Odishatv Bureau

New Delhi: Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Monday said coal sector will play a very important role in achieving the target of USD five trillion economy by 2022, the year marking the completion of 75 years of the country's Independence.

Launching a single window clearance system for the coal sector, he said commercial coal mining auctions will now facilitate small and medium industries to receive coal supplies easily.

The home minister said the coal sector has crossed an important milestone towards fulfilling the dream of 'Aatmanirbhar Bharat' (self reliant India) under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The coal sector will play a very important role in achieving the target of USD five trillion economy by 2022, the year marking the completion of 75 years of Independence, he said at the event, also attended by Union Coal Minister Pralhad Joshi.

Shah said for a long time the need was felt to remove uncertainty in the coal sector and bring in transparency, which has been fulfilled by the Modi government.

He said till 2014, the coal sector seemed entangled in bureaucracy and lack of transparency amidst many allegations of corruption.

Till that time, it was extremely difficult to work in this field, but in 2014, the government under the leadership of Prime Minister Modi made many changes and today with full transparency in the coal sector, equal opportunities are available for all, he said.

We have the most intelligent and educated youth, hardworking labour force as well as a transparent democracy, he said.

The home minister said if there is an assessment of the work done in the coal sector since Independence, it would emerge that unprecedented work has been done under the leadership of Modi in the last six years.

The maximum increase in production has taken place within the same six years.

Around 560 MT of coal was produced in 2014, while in 2020 it has reached 729 MT, he said.

Emphasising on accelerating the pace of coal mining, Shah said the greater the pace of this sector, the faster the nation's economy will grow, and it will help achieve the target of the USD five trillion economy.

The home minister also praised Joshi for the remarkable work done and said he felt assured that today the country is moving towards a new future.

Today 19 successful bidders have been allotted mines under the country's first commercial coal mining auction. This will provide an estimated revenue of about Rs 6,500 crore to states every year and will also create more than 70,000 jobs, he said.

Besides, Shah said, it will also lead to an investment of Rs 8,000 crore to Rs 10,000 crore.

He said about Rs 2.50 lakh crore will be invested in the next decade under the PSU plan of coal, and about Rs four lakh crore is expected to be invested under the PSU-Private plan. The roadmap for this is also ready.

The Union minister said the commercial coal mining auction process will open the way for development in the central and eastern tribal areas of the country.

Prior to the Modi government, Eastern India did not develop at the same pace as it should have, compared to Western India, he said.

The Modi government has ensured the development of all regions of the country as well as all sections of society. The government has created the Rs 46,000 crore District Mineral Development Fund for people living near the mines, with focus on the development of districts and especially the least developed villages amongst them. This has led to the development of tribal, Dalit, backward and poor people living in these areas, he said.

Shah also handed over charter of letters to successful bidders of the country's first commercial coal mining auction.

Presently, about 19 major approval or clearances are required before starting a coal mine in the country. In the absence of a unified platform for grant of clearances, the companies were required to approach different departments leading to delay in operationalisation of coal mines, Joshi said.

Now, the complete process will be facilitated through the single window clearance portal in a phased way.