Auction Of Virgin Karlapat Bauxite Block In Odisha Put On Hold; Know Why
Bhubaneswar: The auction of Karlapat iron ore and bauxite block has been put on hold.
The Directorate of Mines on Tuesday said that this has been done in compliance with the September 9 interim order of the Orissa High court.
A source had earlier told Odisha Bytes that the auction of the first bauxite mineral block will be held as scheduled unless a specific instruction is received from the HC, where a petition has been filed by an Odisha-based mining contractor.
Karlapat was among the 11 mineral blocks, including seven virgin mines, put up for auction by the Odisha government for which the bidding process began on Saturday.
Incidentally, Karlapat bauxite block lies near the Karlapat Sanctuary, a designated elephant corridor in the Kalahandi district, and is considered ecologically very sensitive.
In a letter to Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, environmentalist Prafulla Samantra had earlier said that mining the Karlapat bauxite block would dry up 300 large and small streams in the sanctuary. “Not just the wildlife but even tribes and indigenous people living close to the forest and dependent on the resources will be adversely affected,” he said.
Of the blocks up for grabs, seven are iron ore blocks, two composite blocks of iron ore and manganese, one composite block of iron ore and dolomite and a bauxite block. Except for Nadidih (Bico), whose lease period expired before March 31, 2020, six blocks of Purheibahal, Chandiposhi, Jumka Pathriposhi Pahar, Dholtapahar, Netrabandha Pahar (West) and Gandhalpada are greenfield mines.
The other four are Kasia, having both iron ore and dolomite, Nadidih (Feegrade) and Teherai, which are composite iron ore and manganese blocks, and Karlapat, a bauxite mineral block.
On Saturday, Jindal Steel and Power Limited (JSPL) bagged the Kasia iron ore at a premium of 118.1 per cent. Seven companies were in the race for this mining block, spread over 194.19 hectare with geological resources of 278.04 million tonne of iron ore (having an average Fe grade of 63.2 pc) and 0.693 mt of dolomite ore.
The second day of the mines auction in Odisha saw ESL Steel Ltd winning Nadidih iron ore block BICO in Sundargarh district by committing to pay a premium of 95.6 per cent. The mineral block, spread over 73.85 hectares, is one of the oldest in Koira mining sector.
Odisha has received 123 bids for the 11 mineral deposits. Jindal Steel and Power Limited, Adani, JSW, Tata Steel, ArcelorMittal, Essel Mining and Industries Limited, Rungta Mines Ltd, MSPL, Vedanta and NMDC are in the race, sources said.