Home >Politics >Policy >Topworth Urja and Metals wins first coal block in round three auctions
The auction process was initiated after the Supreme Court cancelled 204 block allotments. Photo: Bloomberg
The auction process was initiated after the Supreme Court cancelled 204 block allotments. Photo: Bloomberg

Topworth Urja and Metals wins first coal block in round three auctions

Grace Industries and Lloyds Metals and Energy were the other companies eligible to bid for the mine that was previously allocated to B.S. Ispat

New Delhi: Marki Mangli-I mine in Maharashtra was sold on Tuesday to Topworth Urja and Metals ltd for Rs715 per tonne of coal. This is the first closed bid in the third round of coal block auctions.

Grace Industries Limited and Lloyds Metals and Energy Limited were the other companies eligible to bid for the mine that was previously allocated to B.S. Ispat Ltd.

The auction lasted for five hours, according to the MSTC E-commerce website. MSTC Ltd is the nodal agency to monitor the ongoing coal auctions.

Marki Mangli-I is a Schedule-II category mine (that were operational when the allocations were cancelled last year) and has total extractable reserves worth 9.78 million tonnes of coal.

The mines made available by the government in round three belong exclusively to the unregulated sector — that is, industries that use coal for manufacturing products like cement, aluminium, steel and iron.

The government has introduced a change in the auction rules this time around. Earlier, two or more bids from an entity with an end-use plant were treated as separate bids. Now, multiple bids from one company will be treated as a single bid. The top 50% of bids submitted get shortlisted for the next round of auctions.

The 29 blocks auctioned so far have fetched the government around Rs1.72 trillion, giving credence to the Comptroller and Auditor General’s 2012 claim that the allocation of mines over the years without auction had cost the exchequer Rs1.86 trillion.

The process of coal block auctions was undertaken after the Supreme Court cancelled 204 allotments on the grounds that they were in violation of the law.

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