Niti Aayog vice-chairman Rajiv Kumar has said that any policy change without deciding on pending mining applications will have an adverse impact on investors’ confidence.
As part of major reforms announced recently, the Centre is reported to be considering deletion of a provision in the Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) Act, 2015 that guarantees a successful explorer the right to move ahead –from a reconnaissance permit to a prospecting licence, or from a prospecting licence to a mining lease.
As ET had earlier reported, the mines ministry believes such a move could free up nearly 500 mineral areas that could then be auctioned.
While ushering in a regime of auctions for mining grants, the 2015 amendment to the Act had rendered every other application null and void. According to Kumar of government think tank Niti Aayog (National Institute for Transforming India), there was a reason why some were spared.
In a recent letter to mines minister Prahlad Joshi, Kumar wrote, “Any move to delete the provisions of 10(A)2(b) without deciding these pending cases will defeat the very purpose for which these provisions were brought in when the amendment to the MMDR was introduced in 2015.