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Union coal min takes stock of coal production in Jharkhand, says no crisis in the country

Ranchi: Allaying concerns of power crisis amid the perceived shortage of coal in the country, Union coal minister Pralhad Joshi on Thursday visited Ranchi to take stock of coal production in the mine-rich state reiterating once again that there was reason for any worry. He added that the domestic miners have ramped up production and assured that all thermal power plants will be provided required coal stocks as per their needs.

“Let me assure once again that we don’t have any shortage of coal production at this moment and we are in a position to power the required quantity of stocks to all the thermal plants in the country. Just yesterday, our cumulative coal supplies to all the thermal power plants from all sources recorded more than 2 million tones. We are further increasing dispatch to power plants as per their needs in a more efficient manner,” said the union minister talking to reporters during his visit to Ashoka mines, an open cast mine in Jharkhand’s Chatra district.

He however conceded that there were some issues in dispatch few days ago leading to concerns of shortage and attributed it due to heavy rains and drop in imports. Notably, government of India has been focusing on ramping up domestic production both through its existing mines and through commercial mining to cut down on coal imports. The minister said, “We had cut down on imports by about 22% of the country’s need already. Coupled with it, heavy rains this time led to some issues but there is no more any crisis.”

The minister reached Ranchi around noon in a helicopter from Bilaspur in Chattsigarh and headed to Chatra to take stock of the coal production activities. Ashoka mine in Chatra district is operated by Central Coalfields Limited (CCL), one of the largest coal producers of the country headquartered in Ranchi.