State ministerial panel on linkage policy seeks extension

Bhubaneswar: Odisha government's inter-ministerial committee, set up to formulate a long term linkage policy for supply of ore to local industries, today sought further extension of its tenure, official sources said.
The committee headed by finance minister Prasanna Acharya, was supposed to submit its report by April 30 to the government.
"Now we feel, the committee requires one month more time for formulating a long term policy" Acharya told reporters after the meeting.
Stating that the committee's report was almost ready, Acharya said: "We sought further extension because of the recent Supreme Court judgement in regards to mining in Karnataka," he said.
This apart, the committee will also look into the Apex Court's judgement on the proposed bauxite mining at Niyamgiri Hills, said Steel and Mines minister R K Singh, also a member of the inter-ministerial committee.
"The committee feels that some of the provisions of the Supreme Court judgement on Karnataka mining activities may be applicable to other states also and the need to formulate a policy which will not be challenged in the court of law in future," Singh said.
The Minister also admitted that the local industries were facing raw material scarcity as the mine owners sale minerals to industries in other places or go for export.
Meanwhile, the ministerial committee had interactions with the representatives of steel companies like Jindal Steel and Power Ltd (JSPL), Visa Steel and Bhushan Steel, aluminium major Vedanta, industries associations and mines owners.
With local industries facing raw material scarcity, the state steel and mines department through a resolution dated December 5, 2012 made it mandatory for mine lessees without end-use plants, to sell at least 50 per cent of their extracted iron ore to state based consuming industries.