State may have to import coal from other countries: Chief Minister

Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa has criticised the Centre's “non-cooperative attitude” towards the State's demand to step up coal allocation and for not providing coal linkage to the proposed 1,600 MW power plant in Chhattisgarh.

“We chose to locate the power plant at Chhattisgarh hoping that getting the coal linkage would be easy… We have completed the land acquisition process and located water supply sources to the proposed plant, but the project has been stalled as the Centre is yet to provide coal linkage,” he said.

Addressing presspersons at the temporary helipad on the outskirts of Melkunda village, 20 km from the city, on Saturday, Mr. Yeddyurappa said that the Union Ministry of Forests and Environment was yet to give its clearance for coal linkage to the Chhattisgarh plant.

He said that the State Government was seriously considering importing coal from other countries, even if the cost of the imported coal was high, to feed the requirements of the proposed thermal plants in the State.

To a question on whether he would meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and demand adequate supply of coal, Mr. Yeddyurappa said that he had, on several occasions, brought the issue to the notice of the Prime Minister. “The Prime Minister has promised to convene a meeting of the Chief Ministers to discuss the issue of shortage of coal for power production… We are waiting for him to announce the date for the proposed meeting and will explain the problems faced by Karnataka.”

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