CIL staff to participate in disinvestment programme: Goyal

Employees of state-run behemoth Coal India will be given an opportunity to participate in the proposed disinvestment of the company and all issues regarding their opposition to the share sale have been resolved, Union Minister Piyush Goyal has said.

Davos: Employees of state-run behemoth Coal India will be given an opportunity to participate in the proposed disinvestment of the company and all issues regarding their opposition to the share sale have been resolved, Union Minister Piyush Goyal has said.

The power and coal minister, who was here to attend the World Economic Forum (WEF) Annual Meeting, also said employees of Coal India have understood and appreciated the imperatives of the disinvestment proposal.

The government needs to lower its stake in CIL to 75 percent as per the minimum public shareholding norms for listed companies, while the disinvestment would also fetch it a significant amount of revenue through sale of shares.

Asked whether the government would want CIL employees to get more shares in the disinvestment, Goyal said, "Yes, the disinvestment process will allow the workmen also to participate in it and they have appreciated the imperatives of the disinvestment."

He, however, did not elaborate on the share sale or quota for the employees.

Talking about the recent strike by CIL employees and their opposition to the disinvestment, the Minister said, "All issues have been largely resolved."

"Any other concern or issue that crops up in their mind, can always be looked into by the committee that we have formed," Goyal told PTI in an interview here.

"But by and large the workmen are fully satisfied with the sincerity and the honesty and transparency with which we have shared our plans with them for their future and the future of Coal India and they are feeling very secure in the Modi regime," he said.

"In fact the strike helped me build a bond with the workmen and their representatives and now they have come on board in my one billion tonnes production target for Coal India.

"So we are working now as a team of the government, CIL management and the workmen and their representatives to achieve this target," he added.

Earlier this month, coal workers had gone on a strike after trade unions gave a call for the biggest ever industrial action in four decades protesting against what they called attempts for "disinvestment in Coal India and denationalisation of coal mining".

The unions had given call for a five-day strike, but called it off after the end of the second day following assurances from the government that their concerns will be looked into related to various aspects.

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