The government plans to put on the block 13 gold mines in the states of Andhra Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh in the ongoing month amid its efforts to give a boost to the mining sector's contribution to the country's gross domestic product.
Of the 10 blocks in Andhra Pradesh, the auction of five blocks may take place on August 26, while the remaining five are likely to be put on the block on August 29, according to latest data of the government. The gold mines in Andhra Pradesh include Ramagiri North Block, Boksampalli North Block, Boksampalli South Block, Javakula-A Block, Javakula-B Block, Javakula-C Block, Javakula-D Block, Javakula-E Block, Javakula-F Block.
The notices inviting tender for these gold mines were floated in March. In the case of remaining three gold mines in Uttar Pradesh, the auction will happen this month. But no specific dates have been given. Of the three mines in the state, two gold mines -- Sonapahari Block and Dhurva-Biadand Block-- are in Sonbhadra. The notices inviting tender of these three gold mines in Uttar Pradesh were floated on May 21.
The government had in May said the auction of mineral blocks has stabilised in the country. The states have auctioned 199 mineral blocks as on August 4. The allocation of mineral blocks through auction route kicked off after amendment in the Mining Act in 2015. In the last financial year, 45 mineral blocks were put on sale.
The state governments, the Centre had said, are getting a very good share of revenue from the auctions and had stressed that those states which were early birds in the race were really happy. The mines ministry had earlier said the amendment in mineral auction rules will encourage competition that will ensure more participation in sale of blocks.
The Ministry of Mines had notified the Minerals (Evidence of Mineral Contents) Second Amendment Rules, 2021, and the Mineral (Auction) Fourth Amendment Rules, 2021 to amend the Minerals (Evidence of Mineral Contents) Rules, 2015 (MEMC Rules) and the Mineral (Auction) Rules, 2015 (Auction Rules), respectively. The amendment rules have been framed after extensive consultations with the states, industry associations, miners, other stakeholders and general public.