MCL resumes mining operation in Odisha

Mahanadi Coalfields Limited’s (MCL) Monday resumed coal production from its 40
million tonne per year capacity projects under Jagannath area in Angul
district, following district administration removing the blockade by 122 people
obstructing mining operations.
mining operations restarted with the first shift on Monday after three days of
obstruction by 122 people of Hensmul village adjacent to the MCL’s Bhubneswari
expansion of its 25 MT capacity Bhubaneswari OCP, MCL requires Hensmul village
it had acquired long back under CBA Act after providing all R&R benefits to
the villagers, including employment and compensation package under rules.
“Even if
villagers do not disturb our operations, but continue to occupy their dwellings
in Hensmul village in the mining zone, the company would have no other option
but to close down operations under Jagannath area by October or November as
there will remain no room left for mining in view of safety norms due to
people’s presence in Hensmul. This may cost loss of around 120 lakh tonnes coal
production during current financial year,” said a release issued by the MCL.
of mining operations at Jagannath Area, which has the production target of
about 40 million tonnes for 2014-15, would mean snapping off fuel line to the
power plants in Tamil Nadu, Telengana and Andhra Pradesh.
In line
with the decision taken at the tripartite meeting held on July 6, 2014 under
the aegis of District Administration, State Government, MCL (on Saturday July
12 ) appealed to all 122 project affected people terminated from jobs to
refrain from agitation in view of minutes of the tripartite meeting. However,
they refused to join, demanding payment of wages for period during which they
remained on strike, which is unacceptable under the established norm of ‘no
work, no pay’.

Out of
total 285 people, who were given jobs in the company and allotted plots in
rehabilitation site provided by the Odisha government in the nearby locality
Gurjang, 122 people had refused to vacate their dwellings despite continuous
persuasion by the civil administration and company authorities and resorted to
obstruct operations at two mega projects – Bhubaneswari OCP and Ananta OCP. It
is noteworthy to mention that out of 122 terminated workers from Hensmul 79
also had company-provided quarters.

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