‘Pro­duc­tion is yet to start in 80 per­cent of the al­lo­cated blocks’

Tehelka - - EXCLUSIVE -

in­ter-min­is­te­rial group. In 2004, a de­ci­sion was taken in-prin­ci­ple that all fu­ture al­lo­ca­tion would hap­pen through com­pet­i­tive bid­ding. But the file kept do­ing the rounds of the the coal and law min­istries. Why? This is be­cause a few states that pro­duce coal wrote to the Cen­tre that the auc­tion would re­sult in in­crease of coal prices and im­pact the price of power. Which states? Ra­jasthan, Ch­hat­tis­garh, Jhark­hand and West Ben­gal. In 2010-11, we called meet­ings with these states. We con­vinced them that all the money that comes out of bid­ding will be given to the states and the Cen­tre will not keep a penny. This de­ci­sion should not take six years. It did not take six years. The pro­posal came in 2006. The de­ci­sion was taken in 2008. The UPA- 2 came to power in 2009. It went to the Stand­ing Com­mit­tee. Usu­ally, such de­ci­sions take two years. First the min­is­ters from the states met. Once they agreed to the terms, the amend­ment Bill went to the Stand­ing Com­mit­tee. Then reg­u­la­tions were framed. No blocks have been al­lot­ted since the UPA- 2 has come to power. Even af­ter the pol­icy was adopted, no blocks were made avail­able for bid­ding… Rules and reg­u­la­tions had to be framed. Blocks had to be iden­ti­fied. This took 6-8 months. The bid­ding process might be­gin in an­other month or so. What is your view on the of wind­fall gain? While ex­am­in­ing ac­counts, au­dit­ing tech­niques do not re­flect how de­ci­sions are taken in a demo­crat­i­cally elected gov­ern-

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