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New Delhi [India], July 31 : The demise of employees due to COVID-19 will be treated as accidental death and the kins of the employee will get the same financial benefits as they get in the case of accidental death during duty, said Union Minister of Coal and Mines Pralhad Joshi on Thursday.
While interacting with media in Ranchi during his one day visit to Jharkhand, Joshi said that Coal India’s around four lakh on roll and workers on contract will get benefited from this decision. The kins of employees deceased from COVID so far will also get protected, according to an official statement by the Coal Ministry.
“Putting their lives in danger Coal Indians have performed a tremendous job during the coronavirus pandemic. They are relentlessly doing a good job. That’s why I proudly call them Coal Warriors. I have announced this benefit just to recognise their invaluable service to the nation,” said Joshi.
The Minister further said that commercial coal mining is going to fuel development in Jharkhand in coming years. Under the commercial auction of 9 coal mines in Jharkhand, the State is expected to earn more than Rs. 3,200 crores in one-year as revenue and almost 50,000 additional employment will be generated for the people of the State.
In a meeting with Chief Minister of Jharkhand Hemant Soren, Joshi discussed various mining related issues with him. He reviewed the performance of coal companies Central Coalfields Limited (CCL), Bharat Coking Coal Limited (BCCL) and Eastern Coalfields Limited (ECL) and appreciated the hard work being put by the Coal Warriors in fulfilling the power demand of the nation during the ongoing pandemic.
“India still meets a fifth of its annual coal requirement through imports. Once commercial mining picks up, imports by independent thermal power plants and captive power plants are likely to be substituted, saving in potential import bill of around Rs 30,000 crores per every year,” he added, while stressing upon the need of commencement of commercial coal mining.
He further said that the commencement of commercial coal mining will help in providing direct and indirect employment to more than three lakh people.
“Response of commercial mining auction is very good. Especially in Jharkhand, we are getting 5 to 10 bidders for almost all of the mines put on auction. The state will get benefited from it and it will chart a new chapter of growth in the state,” he added. (ANI)