Taking forward its crusade against firms sitting idle on coal and lignite blocks allocated to them, the Coal Ministry has issued warnings to another seven firms, asking them to either develop the blocks or get them cancelled.
"The allocatee(s) is (are) hereby warned and directed to develop the block(s) immediately. Any further failure in development of the block(s) would lead to necessary actions as per the terms and conditions of allocation, including de-allocation," the warning letters said.
Four firms -- Assam Mineral Development Corporation, Meghalaya Mineral Development Corporation, Tamil Nadu Electricity Board and Orissa Mining Corporation -- were warned for delaying the development of the Mandakini-B coal block, which was jointly allocated to them, while Orissa Mining Corporation was warned over the Utkal-D coal block.
In addition, Binani Cement was warned for inordinate delays in development of the Nimbri Chandrabadan lignite block, while NSL Nagapatnam Power and Infratech received a warning in connection to the Merta Road Lignite block allocated to it to meet the requirement of its power plant in Rajasthan.
Last month, the government had warned various other firms, including NTPC, Maharashtra State Mineral Development Corporation, Utkal Coal, Gondwana Ispat and Andhra Pradesh Development Corp, for not developing their blocks on time.
In May, the Coal Ministry said a panel set up by it to look into the process of deallocation of coal blocks had recommended issuing warnings to 29 coal and three lignite blocks allocatees.
The panel had also suggested the cancellation of 14 coal blocks and one lignite block awarded to six PSUs, including NTPC, and three private firms, for failing to develop the mines.
This year, the government has deallocated coal blocks held by various firms, including NTPC, Damodar Valley Corporation and Andhra Pradesh Power Generation Corporation.