Mines ministers’ meet on May 27 to discuss auction of minor minerals

Bhubaneswar: The Centre has raised concerns over the lack of transparency in the auctioning of minor mineral resources like sand and stones. Participating in a program in Bhubaneswar, Union Secretary of Mines, Balwinder Kumar said a detailed discussion in the regard will be held with the Mines ministers of States on May 27.

The secretary also informed that foreign companies will be allowed to participate in the mines auction.

According to sources, the meeting of the Mines ministers of various States on May 27 will discuss ways to make the auction process transparent and also garner optimum revenue for the State government. Moreover, a National Mineral Exploration Policy will be enacted under which foreign companies will be allowed in extraction of minerals, informed Kumar.

“The central government would like to discuss the illegal mining of sand and other minor minerals with the mining ministers. This is a very very serious problem in many states where there is no transparent method of allotment of minor minerals. We are now asking Mineral Exploration Corporation of India (MECI) to upgrade exploration to G1 and G2 level so that these mines can be put on auction,” said the Mines secretary.