Centre mulls giving all clearances to minerals blocks before auctioning

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New Delhi, Jul 22: The Centre is considering to grant all approvals, including environmental clearance, to mineral blocks before putting them for sale, a move that may give a push to the auctions.
The development comes soon after government think-tank Niti Aayog said all the approvals concerning the mines should be taken before the mineral blocks are auctioned.
“It is the work of Niti Aayog to deliberate on such issues. Definitely that issue is in their knowledge and Niti Aayog is working on it.
“We also want that this kind of system is set up. But for that it will take a little time and we are in discussions on this,” Mines Minister Narendra Singh Tomar said.
The government had earlier said that unless issues related to green clearances and land rights are addressed upfront, India may not make much progress in auctioning of mineral blocks in the future.
Recently, Niti Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant said there is a need to overhaul the MMDR (Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) Act again.
He had also said there is a need to make the Act easy and simple.
The government had recently said it has given in-principle approval to provide single clearance for environment and forest to the new lease holders of the 288 mining leases expiring in two years. Of the 43 mineral blocks auctioned so far, the states will earn a revenue of Rs 1.55 lakh crore over the lease period.