New Delhi: Proceeds from the ongoing coal block auctions are likely to cross Rs 2 lakh crore, surpassing CAG's estimate of Rs 1.86 lakh crore loss on account of the allocation of blocks without auction during the UPA regime. “Likely proceeds from coal block auctions (may) cross Rs 2 lakh crore. These include e-auction proceeds, royalty proceeds and upfront payment,” Coal Secretary Anil Swarup said.
“Apart from above, around Rs 97,000 crore of additional tariff benefit will accrue to the consumers of power through reverse auction of coal blocks,” he added. His remarks come at a time when the government is set to garner over Rs 11,300 crore from sale of two mines including Utkal C to Monnet Power today, the fifth day of the second tranche of auctions.
The government kitty swelled by an estimated Rs 9,537.22 crore from sale of Utkal C mine in Odisha to Monnet Power Company earlier in the day.
Bidding for Lohari block in Palamu district of Jharkhand is underway and as per present bid price of Rs 1,992 a tonne, it will cross a revenue of Rs 1,800 crore. “Monnet Power was the highest bidder at (Rs) 770 (a tonne) for Utkal C Coal Block. Bidding still underway for Lohari. Presently at 1992,” Swarup said.
The cumulative Rs 2 lakh crore revenue to the exchequer from the sale of 32 mines so far, includes over Rs 1 lakh crore from sale of 19 mines in the first tranche.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had said earlier this month that CAG's astronomical Rs 1.86 lakh crore loss figure in coal block allocations had raised some doubts initially, but the auction of less than 10 per cent of those mines (19 mines in first tranche) alone has garnered Rs 1.10 lakh crore.
Official auditor CAG had said that the mines allocation without auction during the UPA period led to a loss of staggering Rs 1.86 lakh crore. The allotment of over 200 coal mines were later cancelled following a Supreme Court order, which led to the government announcing the ongoing auction. Monnet Power Company bagged the Utkal C mine in Odisha today - 5th day of the second phase of coal block auctions - for an estimated Rs 9,537.22 crore.
Utkal C, meant for the power sector has an extractable reserve of 123.86 million tonnes (MT). It was previously allotted to Utkal Coal Ltd.
“Auction for Utkal C block for power sector under Talcher coalfield in Angul district of Odisha, began at 11 am with a Rs 100 a tonne bid. For Lohari, the auction began at Rs 1,690 per tonne,” an official told PTI.