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CEC says no to export of iron ore pellets from Karnataka

Bangalore, May 21, 2013, (PTI) : 21:30 IST
The Supreme Court-appointed Central Empowered Committee here today ruled out any possibility of allowing export of iron ore pellets from Karnataka-based miners.

The team of CEC officials led by its chairman P V Jayakrishanan held day-long discussions with Karnataka Mines and Geology Director and top forest officials, besides lease-holders owning A and B category mines, on according permission to restart mining operation in the state.

Speaking to reporters after the meeting, Federation of Indian Mineral Industries Vice Chairman Basant Poddar said the CEC told miners that there is no scope for allowing export of iron ore pellets at this stage from Karnataka.

The SC had ordered suspension of iron ore exports from Karnataka in 2011.

Poddar also said the CEC told that miners will not be allowed to either do mining or dump ore in overlapped area between two mines. "The survey map fixed by the Joint Survey Team of the CEC last year will be sacrosanct and there is no scope for any further dispute," he said.

However, if there is any minor overlapping in the Category C mines, such area will be exempt from mining, Poddar said.

Poddar said as many as eleven mines in Category A and two mines in Category B have restarted mining operations. "These mines can produce about 4.5 million tonnes per annum."

Former Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa had banned export of iron ore from July 26, 2010. Until the export was banned, Karnataka exported about 20 million tonnes of iron ore annually.

The CEC had convened the meeting to discuss various issues including overlapping of mining leases and implementation of Reclamation and Rehabilitation (R&R) Plans, Poddar said.

The meeting was convened following the April 18 Supreme Court order allowing reopening of all Category A and B mines in Karnataka.

The court had clamped a total ban on mining in 2011 following allegations of corruption and environmental damage. It had set up a CEC which studied the situation on the spot and reported to the court.

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