Thursday, September 18, 2014

To help Vedanta, Orissa nudges Centre for Karlapat bauxite mines

The Financial Express, Sept 18, 2014

Debabrata Mohanty | Bhubaneswar | Published: Sep 18 2014, 08:52 IST
Orissa chief secretary on Wednesday urged the Union mines ministry to reserve Karlapat bauxite mines in Kalahandi for the state-owned Orissa Mining Corporation.
This comes a week after Vedanta Resources chief Anil Agarwal met chief minister Naveen Patnaik seeking his help for bauxite mines for the 1 million tonne per annum bauxite refinery in Lanjigarh block of the same district.
OMC had entered into a MoU with Sesa Sterlite (earlier Vedanta Aluminum) for mining Niyamgiri hilltop in Kalahandi district jointly, but the plan came unstuck in August 2010 after protests from local tribals and environmental activists.
The Anil Agarwal-owned company is running the plant with bauxite sourced from outside Orissa.
Agarwal had met Patnaik seeking his help in getting alternative bauxite mines for his refinery as well as aluminium smelter in Jharsuguda district.
The company has got prospecting licence for 3 laterite mines in Koraput, expecting to get some amount of bauxite from it.
“The proposal would facilitate OMC to provide bauxite in a fair and equitable manner to the state-based end-use plants to meet their raw material...,” Orissa chief secretary GC Pati wrote to Union mines secretary Anup Pujari.
Official sources said once Karlapat is allocated in favour of OMC, it would be a breather for Sesa Sterlite as the state PSU can sign MoU for providing bauxite to it.

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