Saturday, April 13, 2024

Govt earns over Rs 34 cr from coal auction in WKH


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By Our Reporter

SHILLONG, Feb 24: The state government has earned a revenue of over Rs 34.93 crore by auctioning seized coal in West Khasi Hills district last year to the tune of 1,79,281.289 metric tonne (MT).
Altogether 39,395.31 MT was auctioned in January and 1,39,885.979 MT in November.
A total of 5,119 transport challans were issued for lifting the coal from the said auction. The government earned revenue of Rs 34,93,68,087 from the auction as in January 2024. This includes Rs 26,86,63,252 (bid amount), Rs 5,58,72,575 (royalty) and Rs 2,48,32,260 (cess).
The full amount of GST revenue, liable to be realised, has been paid to the government by the authority who supplied the seized coal to the successful bidders at the auction.
Meanwhile, the government’s decision to set up a depot in Maweit has come under the scanner following the discovery that the Coal India Limited (CIL) depot had only about 2,000 MT tonne of coal against what was auctioned by the state (close to 34,000 MT). The roles of the magistrate in-charge, assigned to assess the coal, and an inspector of the Directorate of Mineral Resources have come into question.
A source from the district had earlier informed The Shillong Times about the Maweit CIL depot and how there were attempts to overestimate the amount of coal to allow free movement of illegally-mined coal through the state using challans. The investment was huge for those who paid for the challans but the returns were expected to be lucrative.
According to the source, even for 2,000-3,000 MT of coal which is currently in the depot, nothing, as mandated by CIL, has been followed.
“Transport from the pit to the depot has to be undertaken by the transporter assigned by the CIL. Further weight challans from a certified weighbridge are also a must to ensure measures are not missed. Nothing of this sort has been done,” the source claimed.


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