Tripartite pact signed on coal corridor

New Delhi/ Bhubaneswar: A tripartite memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed today between Odisha government and Railway and Coal ministries for formation of special purpose vehicles (SPVs) to evacuate coal.

The agreement was signed in the presence of Union Railway minister Suresh Prabhu, Coal minister Piyush Goel and Odisha Transport minister Ramesh Majhi.

Union Coal Secretary Anil Swarup had said during his February visit to the state that two special purpose vehicles will be jointly formed by Odisha government, railways, and Mahanadi Coalfields Limited (MCL) for evacuation of coal from Talcher and Ib Valley areas.

In the proposed special purpose vehicles, MCL will have 64 percent stake, while the Indian Railways and Odisha government will have a share of 26 percent and 10 percent, respectively.

Swarup on Saturday had tweeted about signing of the pact.

The railway ministry had recently reviewed the progress of three rail corridor projects in the state, including the Jharsuguda-Barpali-Sardega corridor in Ib Valley. As per the original plan, Ib Valley project was scheduled to be completed in 2009.

The Rs.470 crore Jharsuguda-Barpali railway link project was announced in January 2006 by state-run Coal India to link its Ib Valley coalfields. The project is likely to be completed by 2017.