Bhubaneswar: Odisha government has urged the Centre to stop coal blocks auction for three months.

The State steel & mines minister, Prafulla Mallick, has written a letter to the union coal minister Pralhad Joshi requesting him to stop the auction of coal blocks for three months.

Mallick has stated that the auction would be able to fetch the optimum price. He has pointed out the coal prices are at the lowest due Covid-19 pandemic.

The Odisha minister has stated that the State revenue would be affected as the coal blocks would leased out for 30 years.

The union coal ministry has lined up 9 coal blocks in Odisha for auction in the first phase. These 9 coal blocks promises coal reserves of 10,750 million tonnes. The ministry is proposing to auction 41 coal blocks by November 9,2020. As per the revised time table the last date for submitting the bids is 29th September 2020 and the e-auction process is to be completed between 19th October and 9th November 2020.