Centre has already identified 36 blocks for for allocating via the auction route
KOLKATA : The government may offer 10 coal blocks for auctions in the first phase, and of these four blocks will be allocated to power companies, Coal Secretary S.K. Srivastava said.
“The final decision on coal block auction will be taken next month. In the first phase 10 coal blocks might come up for auction. There will be sector specific allocation,” Srivastava said.
The Centre is working on devising a mechanism for allocating coal blocks via the auction route to private firms and has already identified 36 blocks for the process.
Earlier, the government followed a discretionary process for allotting coal blocks to private companies.
However, last year the process came under scrutiny after the Comptroller and Auditor General of India said the national exchequer had lost 1.86 trln rupees in notional value by following a discretionary allotment process rather than auctioning the blocks.
Consequently, the Supreme Court came down heavily on the discretionary process followed while allocating captive coal blocks to private companies between 1993 and 2010 and the Central Bureau of Investigation is currently probing the issue. -Cogencis