Mineral Law Amendment Bill passed in Lok Sabha

On March 6, 2020, the Lok Sabha passed Mineral Laws (Amendment) bill, 2020. The bill aims to amend Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) act, 1957 and also Coal Mines (Special Provisions) Act, 2015.

Highlights

The bill was passed in the parliament without discussion. This was because of the constant uproar of the opposition over death of 52 people in the Delhi Violence over Citizenship Amendment Act.

Key Features of the bill

The bill opens up the coal sector completely for commercial mining. It also intends to remove end use restrictions to participate in coal mine auctions. This will mainly help reduce coal imports.

Coal Sector in India

The Coal output in India has been declining lately. This is mainly due to flooding of mines and labour unrest. Therefore, GoI has taken several steps to boost coal production in the country. The FDI in coal sector has been made to 100%. GoI is also taking several steps to reduce coal imports. In spite being the fourth largest producer of coal in the world, India imported 235 billion tonnes of coal in 2019.

The GoI has also set a target to reach 1 billion tonnes of coal production by 2024.

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