PM to inaugurate several projects of Mahanadi Coalfields

01 Feb 2024

In line with the principles of PM GatiShakti National Master Plan for providing multi-model connectivity and to reduce logistics cost by enhancing efficiency, the Ministry of Coal has undertaken large scale infrastructure augmentation to further step up efficient evacuation of coal. With an objective to augment railway network in coal producing areas, Joint Venture of CIL, IRCON and Government of Odisha have been formed as ?Mahanadi Coal Rail Ltd.? CIL has funded critical rail infrastructure projects for laying of additional rail lines, doubling of existing rail lines, construction of Rail-over-Rail (ROR), Y-curves etc.

Across subsidiaries, CIL has planned to set up mechanised coal transportation infrastructure from pit-head to railway loading point by construction of First Mile Connectivity (FMC) projects. Total over 100 FMC projects for all larger mines have been planned. These projects on one hand improve the loading efficiency, reduce loading time and on the other hand contribute in reducing emission and pollution.

Prime Minister, Narendra Modi will inaugurate pivotal projects of Mahanadi Coalfields Limited (MCL) in Odisha on February 3, 2024. Among these is the Bhubaneswari Phase-I, a First Mile Connectivity (FMC) project in Talcher Coalfields, Angul district, built at a cost of Rs 3.35 billion will reduce rake loading time to approximately 50 minutes, introduce eco-friendly transportation, decrease greenhouse gas emissions, and reduce coal transportation costs.

Another important project is the Lajkura Rapid Loading System (RLS), constructed at an investment of about Rs 3.75 billion. This system is designed to enhance coal quality and supply, achieving a loading time of around 50 minutes, embracing eco-friendly transportation, minimising greenhouse gas emissions, and reducing overall coal transportation costs. These endeavours not only significantly alleviate environmental impact but also create valuable employment opportunities for the local youth.

In addition to these milestone projects, the Prime Minister will also inaugurate IB Valley Washery, built at a cost of over Rs 5.5 billion in Jharsuguda district of Odisha. This project will mark a paradigm shift in coal processing for quality, signifying innovation and sustainability raising the bar for coal quality standards and aligning with India's vision for cleaner and more efficient energy solutions.

Furthermore, the Prime Minister will dedicate a 50 km long second track of the Jharsuguda-Barpali-Sardega rail line Phase-1 to the nation, built by Mahanadi Coalfields Limited (MCL) with an investment of Rs 8.78 billion. This expansion is poised to significantly enhance rail infrastructure, facilitating seamless transportation and ensuring efficient coal supply chains.

With a combined investment of approximately Rs 21.45 billion, these endeavours underscore the government's commitment to strengthening coal infrastructure for a consistent and efficient energy supply. These projects are expected to bring significant benefits to the coal industry in Odisha and contribute to the country's energy security.

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