Ranchi: Coal India Limited Chairman P S
Bhattacharya Sunday alleged that a lack of cooperation from the
state government has resulted in the illegal reopening of
mines abandoned by the coal companies.
"Abandoned mines are being reopened illegally despite
they being filled-up by the coal companies. To stop this,
there is a need for coordination between the state governments
and the coal companies. (But) we are not getting full
cooperation from them," Bhattacharya told reporters here.
The Jharkhand government had alleged that the coal
companies were leaving their abandoned coal mines exposing
them to illegal mining and accidents.
Describing the problem of illegal mining as a
socio-economic one, Bhattacharya said the CIL had funded a
study initiated by the Jharkhand government through XLRI and
Indian School of Mines.
"The study report has been submitted to us with some
constructive suggestions. But a wider debate is needed as the
livelihood of a large number of people are involved. It (the
issue) should be handled properly," opined Bhattacharya.
According to government reports, several unreported
accidents occur every year in abandoned mines during illegal
digging of coal.
Bhattacharya also called upon the states to lift their
quota of coal to supply small consumers.
"A total of eight MT of coal has been earmarked to
provide coal. The states have been told to set up one or more
nodal agency to lift their (allotted) quota. But some states
are participating in lifting the quota," he said and added the
quota could be increased if necessary.
"Even Jharkhand is not lifting its quota," alleged the
CIL top functionary.