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Orissa's iron ore processing units ask Oil-mining Corporation to cut ore prices

By Super Admin

Bhubaneshwar, Feb. 27 (ANI): Orissa's small-scale iron crushing units are facing severe crisis, as they are not assured of ore lumps supply at reasonable rates from the Oil Mining Corporation.

The 300 crore rupees small units provide employment to 40,000 persons in the district.

Secretary of Keonjhar Industries Federation Soumya Patnaik said the present requirement of the local processing units is about ten percent to 15 percent of the total production of Gandhamardan region. But, the OMC is not ready to allot them even that.

"Why don't they formulate a policy for the local small scale industry? If there is a small policy, if somebody could pick one out of anybody's head whether it is the Chief Minister or Chairman OMC or the GM sales and just point out and say there are about 30 crore crushers, 40, 000 families depending on them. We are asking to have us an allotment for maybe a 10,000 or 5,000 tonnes of ore. Cannot OMC allot 5, 000 tonnes of ore when we are asking at the same price sponge baron people are beckoned," said Patnaik.

However, the state mining minister said the demand of the crushing unit owners will be looked into but the fixed prices won't be compromised.

"As per their demand the department is considering the case and as per rate it is fixed rate of OMC. With regard to the rate there will be no compromise because the rate fixed by OMC as per tender will be applicable to industrialists, crushing units or anybody else. Regarding other demands the department is looking into it and examining their application and very shortly a decision will be taken on it," said Pradip Kumar Amat, Orissa's Steel and Mines Minister.

The federation has now sought an appointment with Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik to ventilate their grievance against the arbitrary pricing policy.

The crushing unit owners have also threatened to take an agitation path if the government fails to resolve their issue. ANI)

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