Government hopeful of 5% divestment in CIL

Last Updated: Wednesday, August 7, 2013 - 19:08

Kolkata: The Coal Ministry on Wednesday expressed hope of getting the go ahead for divestment of five percent stake in Coal India Ltd that could raise Rs 10,000 crore for the exchequer, despite a section of the trade unions opposing the decision.

"We are hopeful of resolving the issues with the unions of CIL," Coal minister Sriprakash Jaiswal said here on the sidelines of an interactive session at the MCC Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

"We have said that we will go in for 5 percent disinvestment. I am aware of the situation. I am sure we will get everybody on board," he said.

Coal India's CITU-led All-India Coal Workers Federation (AICWF) served a three-day strike notice to protest against the proposed disinvestment of the Coal India stake.

The union, which claims to have one-third membership of Coal India's 3.5 lakh workforce, has threatened to observe a strike from September 19 to 21 against the proposed divestment and restructuring of CIL.

Jaiswal had earlier claimed that the union had agreed to divestment for 5 percent instead of the earlier proposal of 10 percent.

The government holds 90 percent stake in Coal India, valued at Rs 1,88,227 crore.

The INTUC-led trade union general secretary SQ Zama said, "Though we are against disinvestment, we want to discuss further with the government before we decide on the strike as there are many other issues."

INTUC plans to discuss further on the matter with the government after August 15 to find a solution.

Meanwhile, reacting to a question on the alleged coal scam, Jaiswal said no preference was given to anyone in coal block allocation.

Another trade union, All India Coal Wrokers' Federation, has served a notice on Coal India for a three-day strike from September 19 to register protest against further disinvestment and restructuring.

At a time when Coal India was facing production shortfall any strike is likely to have a major impact on production.

The CIL management said earlier that the company would require to increase production by 7 percent in the subsequent three quarters of the year to meet the 5.8 per cent production growth target for the year.


First Published: Wednesday, August 7, 2013 - 18:02

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