In a bid to boost private sector investment and create large employment in the mining sector, sources privy to the developments told CNBC-TV18 that the ministry of mines has written a letter to all the states seeking their comments by August 17 to roll out the reforms announced by the Narendra Modi government.
Over 500 mineral mines are under legacy cases and the ministry of mines plans to amend Mines and Mineral Development Regulation (MMDR) Act to wriggle out the mines for auction from the current legal impasse.
The mines ministry has proposed to amend section 10A(2b) and (2c) under the MMDR Act. Clause 10A (2c) allowed pre-auction mines to get environmental and forest clearances (EC and FC) by 2017 and clause 10A (2b) does not have a sunset clause on pre-auction mines for starting operations.
Other reforms for which the mines ministry has sought states' comments are removal of the distinction between captive and non-captive category to remove mining restrictions, rationalisation of stamp duty on the extent of the mining area and not on the grade of the mineral, clarity on illegal and unauthorized mining, development of a national mineral index for determining levies and taxes and also to revise district mineral fund (DMF) to focus on creating tangible assets.
Under the Atma Nirbhar Bharat announcement in May this year, union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman had announced several major reforms like an auction of 500 mineral blocks, rationalisation of royalty on mining, and removal of the distinction between captive and non-captive mining amongst others in a bid to boost the economy and create employment.
First Published: IST