The government on Tuesday said that so far 13 private agencies have been accredited for carrying out the exploration of minerals in the country.
With this, "the total number of government agencies engaged in mineral exploration comes to 22", the mines ministry said in a statement.
Private players are allowed to take part in exploration of mines after the amendment of Mines & Minerals (Development & Regulation) MMDR Act last year. Such agencies need to get accredited by the National Accreditation Board for Education and Training (NABET) of the Quality Council of India (QCI).
Mineral Exploration and Consultancy Limited (MECL), a central public sector enterprise under the mines ministry, carries out exploration of minerals through National Mineral Exploration Trust funding. Besides, MECL also provides consultancy services for preparation of reports and other documents for actionable blocks.
MECL is also engaged with the Rajasthan government for feasibility study of potash deposit in western part of the desert state.