New Delhi, Mar 10 (PTI) The Centre has cancelled the sixth and seventh rounds of coal mines auction under which it was planning to put on sale 19 blocks. The coal ministry in a notice to the bidders said that "the 6th Tranche and 7th Tranche of auction stands cancelled." However, the government did not specify the reasons for the cancellation. "Accordingly, the tender process of the coal mines...stands cancelled," the ministry said.
Under the sixth round, the government had earlier announced the auction of 13 blocks for the regulated sectors, including iron and steel, cement and aluminium. The mines were Brahampuri, Bundu, Gondkari, Gondulpara, Jaganathpur A, Jaganathpur B, Khappa and Extn, Bhaskarpara, Marki Mangli IV, Sondiha, Chitarpur, Jamkhani and Gare Palma IV/1. While in the seventh tranche the coal ministry had said it would auction six coking coal blocks for iron and steel sector.
The blocks were Brahmadiha, Choritand Tilaiya, Jogeshwar and Khas Jogeshwar, Rabodh, Rohne and Urtan North. The tender process under the sixth and seventh rounds was "initiated vide notice inviting tender dated October 25, 2018", the ministry had said. A source had earlier said the successful allottees of the 19 coal blocks will be allowed to sell up to 25 per cent of the actual production in open market at prices fixed by state-owned Coal India.
The government had last month allowed sale of 25 per cent of coal production from captive mines in the open market, a move aimed at increasing competitiveness and making future auction of blocks attractive. The decision was taken during a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs under the chairmanship of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, an official release had said. The allottee of a coal mine for specified end use or own consumption was not permitted to sell coal in open market earlier.