No price hike in coal, abundant stock for power sector: Bagrodia

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Mumbai, May 21 (UNI) Union Minister of State for Coal Santosh Bagrodia today categorically said that coal price would not be hiked during this fiscal year and the country has abundant coal stocks for the power sector.

Talking to reporters here, Mr Bagrodia said the sector aims to increase the coal production upto 425 million tonnes per year.

''I expect power companies to have a stock of coal for 21 days, to fulfill their needs,'' the Minister added.

He said all over the country, 182 coal blocks have been given to the private and public participation, out of which 22 blocks are in Maharashtra which have been producing 1,222 million tonnes.

''I expect that all the blocks including in Maharashtra would start soon, and action would be taken against those blocks which do not start functioning,'' he added.

''We do have enough of washeries for the coal,'' Mr Bagrodia added.

Meanwhile, Mr Bagrodia informed that the government has alloted Rs 8,600 crore to evacuate people staying over live coal mines.

UNI JM RN SBA HT1805

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