Government on Tuesday asserted that thermal power plants were not facing shortage of coal following de-allocation of 22 coal blocks for failing to develop the facilities but admitted that coal production was low as compared to new power projects being set up in the country.

Coal Minister Sri Prakash Jaiswal told the Lok Sabha during Question Hour that “no power plant has been shut due to shortage of coal.”

At the same time he conceded that the country was facing coal shortage but noted that coal was being imported to overcome the problem.

He said there was a mismatch in the ratio of coal being produced and new power projects being set up.

To a supplementary, Mr. Jaiswal said several companies have moved courts against de-allocation of coal blocks and the government would file counter affidavits to defend its action.

To a query by BJP president Rajnath Singh, the minister agreed that 27 files of the ministry relating to coal block allocation between 1993 and 2004 could not be provided to CBI investigating coal scam.

He said the files could not be “located” and efforts were on to trace them.

He said CBI has been provided with 740 files to help in its investigation.

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