New Delhi: State-owned Coal India Ltd (CIL) is planning to take steps to clear fuel supply bottlenecks, including augmenting output to 615 million tonnes (mt) by fiscal 2017, as the power sector reels under fuel shortages.

“To ease the coal supply bottlenecks, CIL is planning to initiate and develop infrastructure facilities like speeding up the process of laying railway tracks, especially in those areas where coal reserves can be tapped," the company said in its latest report.

The development of sidings is another thrust area that will help in increasing coal supplies, the “Maharatna" status firm said, adding that the coal crushing capacity is also being augmented.

“The company also envisages to produce in an optimistic scenario, 615mt of coal by terminal year of XII Five Year Plan (2016-17)," it said.

The company dispatched 353.83mt of coal to the power sector in fiscal 2014, and said that it could have been higher but for the restrictions of intake of coal by some power stations due to availability of high coal stocks at the plant end.

“Our company also met around 86% of supply under FSA (fuel supply agreement) commitments to power utilities, including 99% of committed quantity to NTPC," CIL said.

The company is hopeful that its efforts to ease bottlenecks that have impeded growth in the past would succeed in the years to come.

“Our new R&R (rehabilitation and resettlement) policy has been made more flexible... which would help us in acquiring land expeditiously. This would see more coal projects opening up and help in enhancing the production levels," it said.

CIL added that it is planning to increase production in abandoned underground mines with increased mechanisation.

Twenty-eight power plants across the country had coal stocks of less than four days as on 4 September. PTI

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