GDK5 incline UG mine closed

The machinery deployed in GDK 5 incline underground mine that is being brought out of the mine in Godavarikhani in Peddapalli district.   | Photo Credit: ByKMDayashankar

It was really an emotional separation from the GDK 5 incline underground mine for the coal miners of the Singareni Collieries Company Limited (SCCL) in Godavarikhani of Peddapalli district as the management had decided to close down the UG mine and convert it into an Open Cast project (OCP) at the same place.

In the wake of increase in cost of production of coal from the underground mine, the SCCL decided to close GDK 5 incline and mine area and converting it into OCP-5 in the Godavarikhani coal belt region. Started in 1961, this underground mine provided employment to 2,000 coal miners, who work in three shifts, after starting its production in 1970. The mine has about 60.96 million tonnes of coal reserves and the SCCL could extract only 20.14 MT even after almost five decades of operation. With the increasing cost of production Singareni authorities decided to excavate at least three million tonnes of per annum for a period of 14 years through OCP-5.

Old equipment

Following the closure of GDK-5, the authorities have already transferred the coal miners to other adjoining UG mines like GDK 11 A, GDK 1 and 2 mines. Further, the authorities have employed some 70 miners in a shift to remove the equipment deployed in the UG mine. The miners are removing the pipes, roof bolts, supporters, rollers, cables and other materials, which would be shifted to other mines.

“We are associated with this UG mine since our younger age. But, now the management had displaced us from this mine and moved us to other UG mine. The management is only bothered about cutting the cost of production and not about the welfare of the miners in this age of competition,” a miner, who did not want to be quoted, said. “Earlier, there used to be around 2,000 coal miners working round-the-clock, but now it has come down to 70 miners per shift that too only for removing the machinery deployed inside,” he lamented.

Official sources said that the management had decided to convert the GDK 5 incline mine into OCP-5 because of losses being incurred in the UG mine. Against the target of producing 34,000 tonnes of coal per month, the miners were unable to achieve even 22,000 tonnes per month. As the mine was running in losses to the tune of around ₹ 60 crore, the management had converted it into OCP-5 to excavate coal at lower cost, they maintained.

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Printable version | Sep 19, 2021 5:57:03 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/gdk5-incline-ug-mine-closed/article29761642.ece

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