Coal controller to introduce ‘hallmarking’

Kolkata: The Coal Controller’s Organisation, an outfit of Ministry of Coal, will be introducing a concept of “hallmarking the grade of coal of each siding” to ensure quality of coal, an official said.

“There should be no grade slippage. To achieve this target, this year (2017) our organisation has planned and entrusted job of gradation (coal) to scientific institutions,” Coal Controller Anjani Kumar said here.

“This much I can assure that we will be hallmarking the grade of coal of each siding,” Kumar added.

The move is similar to what is prevalent in case of gold jewellery to ensure the purity of gold.

According to him, institutions like Indian Institutes of Technology (IIT) Guwahati, IIT (BHU) Varanasi, Indian Institute of Engineering Science and Technology, Shibpur, IIT (ISM), Dhanbad have been engaged for gradation.

They will also be collecting coal samples in a scientific manner and carrying out analysis of those samples.

“I am 100 per cent confident that from April 1, 2017 consumers will get coal as per declared grade,” Kumar said.

He emphasised that there would be no requirement of third party sampling if coal producers supply coal as per declared grade and no question of trust deficit would arise between suppliers and consumers.

Kumar also said the office undertook the fresh study on energy content of coal of 400 odd Coal India’s mines.

According to industry sources, so far the declaration of grades of coal was like self-declaration by coal companies and such declaration was normally accepted by the controller office.

Coal Controller used to release coal grades of mines based on which prices of coal were fixed for consumers.

Coal Consumers’ Association of India has been raising its voices against the grade slippage.

Coal India Chairman Sutirtha Bhattacharya said efforts have been made to arrest the grade slippage.