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Jammu and Kashmir government endeavours to explore all possibilities to harness the abundant mineral resources to boost the economy of the state, Industries and commerce minister Chander Parkash Ganga has said. "The government focussed on making mining operations profitable through enhanced production and sale," the minister said chairing the 169th meeting of the Board of Directors of JK Minerals Ltd here. The minister stressed the need for optimum harnessing of highly rich cast gypsum mines located at Assar in Doda and at Parlanka in Ramban besides coal mines at Kalakote in Rajouri and Sapphire mines at Paddar in Kishtwar. "There is a need for evolving an effective working plan for extraction of minerals in the state to achieve optimum production capacity," he said directing the officers to make all efforts to ensure that all mining operations are made profitable through enhanced production and marketing. He stressed on security and safety of the staff working in the mines saying that it should be the top concern and duty of the corporation to ensure that their employees work in a total secure and comfortable manner for optimum outcome of their services. The minister asked for a fresh proposal to close down the Moghla (Metka) mine and tendering for the 70 lakh tonne Gypsum to be mined and exported in a time bound manner. Earlier, the board members reviewed the progress on various projects undertaken by JK Minerals in the state. Managing Director, JKML, Abid Suhail said in the first two quarters of the current fiscal the corporation achieved the production target of 7,100 tonne coal and 53,500 tonne gypsum against the set target of 7,000 tonne coal and 50,000 tonne gypsum, respectively. The corporation has generated revenue to the tune of Rs 6.30 crore against sale of coal and Rs 4.43 crore against the sale of gypsum during current financial year, he said. In order to ensure timely excavation of 5 mt Gypsum from the project site, the meeting decided that Parlanka mine area should be bifurcated into two to three sub-sectors so that the huge submerging Gypsum reserves are excavated within the next five year with annual production target line fixed at 10 lakh tones, an official spokesman said.
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