The inter-departmental committee on mines today recommended the Odisha government to allow opening of 26 mines that remained closed for over one year due to some reason or the other.
The committee headed by Development Commissioner U N Behera suggested the state government to reopen the 26 mines under the provisions of the new Mines and Minerals (Development & Regulation) Amendment Act, 2015.
However, the final decision in this regard will be taken by the state government.
“In accordance with the provisions of the amendments made in the MMDR Act, the committee recommended extension of lease period of 26 mines that had come up for our consideration,” Director of Mines Deepak Kumar Mohanty told reporters after the meeting.
Stating that the final decision would be taken by the state government itself, Mohanty said the committee recommended extension of lease period till 2030 for captive mines and till 2020 for non-captive mines.
The 26 mines having today got recommendation of the committee included the 18 mines earlier closed for second and subsequent renewal following the Supreme Court orders on May 16, 2014.
However, eight iron ore and manganese ore mines were allowed to operate under express order, Mohanty said.
Of the eight mines allowed to operate under express order, Mohanty said lease deeds have been executed for three mines belonging to SAIL and one belonging to OMC. They have already got lease extension. The rest include mines owned by Tatas, VK Lal and ACC Bargarh, Mohanty said.