CM meets Jaiswal, presses for hike in coal royalty

Bhubaneswar/ New Delhi: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Monday met Union Coal Minister Sriprakash Jaiswal and demanded hike in coal royalty.

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik who is on a two-day visit to the national capital met Union Coal Minister Sriprakash Jaiswal and put forth state’s long-standing demand to increase coal royalty. Patnaik sought an increase in the coal royalty rate to 20% on an ad valorem basis from existing 13.

 "I brought up various important issues for Orissa and our requirements of the state including the royalty on coal … It is less and we want it 20% on the ad valorem basis," Patnaik said.

Besides, Patnaik demanded inclusion of deep side coal blocks allotted to OPGC in Manoharpur under ‘go’ category which would help in thermal power generation and development of western Orissa.

In addition to this, Patnaik also met Union Urban Development Minister Kamal Nath and demanded setting up of Institute of Urban Management and Governance in Orissa.

Last month, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee had said that the Centre is in discussion with Chief Ministers of mineral producing states, including Orissa, on their demand for increasing royalty on mining, and issue will be addressed by a proposed law.

The states had demanded that royalty rate needs to be made ad valorem for all minerals and be raised to at least 20% of the value.

Meanwhile, Union Coal Minister and Union Urban Development Minister said that Centre would consider Orissa’s demand.