The government today will start afresh the process for allotting coal mines to state and central public sector undertakings (PSUs) and will now allot 43 blocks, instead of 36 announced earlier.
"Tomorrow (Feb 17), the Coal Ministry will come out with notification inviting applications for 43 coal blocks," a Coal Ministry official said on Tuesday.
Coal Secretary Anil Swarup further said that instead of 36 coal mines the government has decided that it will allot 45 coal blocks to state-run companies.
The Ministry has decided to allot 43 mines instead of 45 blocks as two mines have been held back as they are being examined by a technical committee.
There is a lot of demand from PSUs for allotment of coal blocks.
The government has put on sale 19 coal blocks in the first lot. Till now nine coal blocks have been bagged by companies like Hindalco, Jaiprakash Associates, Durgapur Projects and BS Ispat.
The government has already started the process of auction of 21 coal blocks to be put on sale in the second lot.