Centre to probe low coal production in MCL

Bhubaneswar: Union Minister of state for coal, Pratik Prakashbapu Patil on Wednesday said he would enquire into the reasons behind low coal production in the Mahanadi Coalfields Ltd (MCL). Patil, who arrived here on a two-day tour to the state, said he was informed about low production of coal in MCL mines due to heavy rains and other difficulties in the area.

"Therefore, I have specially come to see why the supply of coal has come down", Patil said adding that he would ascertain whether it was rain or some other reason. Official sources said Patil would visit some of the MCL mines of Talcher tomorrow and hold discussion with different stake holders.

Earlier, NTPC, NALCO and many other captive power plants (CPP) and independent power producers (IPPs) had lodged complaint against the MCL over inadequate supply of coal for their consumption. Even, NALCO had been importing coal to run its CPP in order to supply power to its smelter at Angul. Patil`s visit is significant as the state government had asked MCL to meet the requirement of local power producers. The company is told to submit periodic report to the state government on volume of supply to the power producers in Orissa.