Tata Steel has finally got the prospecting licence (PL) from the Jharkhand government for the Ankua iron ore mines.
In 2007, Jharkhand had recommended to the Centre separate iron ore prospecting areas in the iron ore-rich Ankua belt of West Singhbhum district to Essar Steel, Tata Steel and JSW Steel.
The Centre approved the proposal in 2008, following which the state government granted prospecting licences to both Essar Steel and JSW Steel, but didn't issue one to Tata Steel.
The licence was issued to Tata Steel on Wednesday after Jharkhand Governor Syed Sibtey Razi—the state is under President's rule—intervened.
Both Essar Steel and JSW Steel are putting up greenfield projects each of 10 million tonne per annum mtpa) in the state, having signed MoUs with the government earlier.
Both the steel companies are also said to have progressed considerably with the spadework involved in commencing prospecting work on the 547 hectares and 1,388 hectares allotted to Esssar and JSW, respectively, for getting environment/forest and other clearances, etc. Tata Steel has been allocated around 1,800 hectare for prospecting in the Ankua area.
fe Bureau / May 22, 2009