New Delhi: The Coal Ministry Wednesday said it has sought the expertise of Finance Ministry with regard to the bidding documents for selection of mine developer and operator for certain Coal India mines.
"We actually thought that Coal India (CIL) has an expertise and under that expertise they have developed bidding documents. I think they have gone ahead and awarded two blocks under MDO (mine developer and operator) system like Rajmahal and all that.
"But we felt that let us seek the expertise of Finance Ministry also. And Finance Ministry offered it. We have given them those bidding documents and they are looking at it," Coal Secretary S K Srivastava told reporters on the sidelines of a coal summit.
Srivastava said it was felt that there was a need to change the Coal India's MDO bid document to make the mine developer-operator concept more attractive to private sector.
Earlier in the year, CIL had said that it was in the process of formulating business model in line with MDO (Mine Developer & Operator) concept.
The Prime Minister's Office (PMO), earlier, had asked the Coal Ministry to fast-track the process of taking back the coal blocks from private firms which have not developed them and giving the deallocated coal mines to Coal India (CIL).
Also, the PMO has said the CIL should appoint mine developer and operators (MDOs) to begin production from these deallocated coal blocks without delay, the official said.
The Coal Ministry had recently allotted 116 mines to CIL for expansion to help it boost production capacity amid the PSU drawing flak for coal shortage across the country.
Though the CIL had asked for 138 mines, the Coal Ministry asked the coal major to recast its plans.
Since CIL is a state-owned company, the Coal Ministry under the government dispensation route has the right to allocate mines to CIL, an official in the Ministry had said earlier.
The gap in demand and supply of coal reached 161.5 million tonnes (MT) during the last fiscal.