Bhubaneswar: The Supreme Court is expected to hear the case of illegal mining in Odisha on Monday which will decide the fate of several mines operating under deemed licenses. Such a situation may occur if the apex court sticks to it’s own recent ruling on mining in Goa holding that deemed mining licences can be valid for not more than 20 years.
Notably, 37 of 53 mines currently operating in the state, are running under deemed extension, according to the documents submitted by the state government before the SC appointed central empowered committee (CEC), a copy of which is with OTV.
Mining experts fear, since the lease expiry of a good number of mines operating the state has crossed 20 years, the SC may ask the Odisha government to issue notices to stop operations of mine owners whose operations fall under such category.
In Odisha, Tata Steel, Jindal Steel & Power Ltd (JSPL), Odisha Mining Corporation (OMC), Essel Mining & Industries Ltd (EMIL), Mid East Integrated Steel Ltd, Ferro Alloys Corporation (FACOR), Rungta Sons and KJS Ahluwalia were among the 53 miners operating their leases under ‘deemed extension’.
In its report to the CEC, the state government stated that all the 53 mines in Odisha are operating with all statutory clearances out of which, nine are running with original lease, three with first and second renewal, and one with third renewal.
Out of 37 mines, which are operating with deemed extension, 13 have received first renewal and 10 such mines are running with deemed extension with second renewal.
Besides, as many as 12 mine leases are running with deemed extension having third renewal and two are running with deemed extension having fourth renewal, the report said.
More importantly, while first renewal has not been granted to five such units, these have applied for second renewal.