City Reports

Rajasthan government gives relief to miners, simplifies mining regulation norms

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February 1, 2018, 5:50 pm

Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhara Raje

Former Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje. File Photo.

Jaipur: Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhara Raje announced several measures to simply rules that regulate mines lease owners in the state. On her directions, to ensure encouragement to the mining industry in the state, department of mines and geology amended and simplified the Rajasthan Minor Mineral Concession Rules, 2017 (New Rules).

As per the new amendments, performance security for the mining leases and quary licenses, which was decided to be 100 percent of the license fee or dead rent in the rules of 2017, has now been halved. This would benefit thousands of mines licensees. Also, now holders of the Letters of Intent (LoI) or clearance certificates would be charged 2.5 times of the yearly premium dead rent or license fee only once during the lease period. Earlier, this premium fee was to be charged every year during the lease period of 50 years. Such a charge was too hefty for the lease owners. This relief in the premium charges has been provided considering difficulty of the miners.

Also, the state government was having no provision issue LoIs on khatedari land or those issued through the draw of lottery. The Government of India (GoI), through the Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) Amendment Act, 2015, had provided to save all kinds of LoIs expect such leases. Now, in accordance with the intent of the GoI, the state government declared to save all such LoIs. After this, allotments could be issued to such LoI holders.

In the previously announced rules of 2017, Dead Rent was scheduled to be charged from March 1, 2017 onwards on all old and new mines leases. According to this schedule, the dead rent dues towards many of the mines got increased several times, deposit the same becoming difficult for the owners. Responding to this greivance, the rules were amended to the effect that the scheduled Dead Rent would be charged from the newly approved mines only. All the old license-holders would continue paying Dead Rent as per the previous rates upto August 31, 2017. For them, Dead Rent would be revised from September 1, 2017 onwards and the charges for it would be either double of old Dead Rent or the new scheduled rate, whichever is less.

As per the new amended rules, against the previous provision of yearly advanced payment, a miner could now pay the Dead Rent in four quarterly installments. This would also ease the mine owners. Also, the maximum amount of premium to be charged from the miner for transfer of ownership in the name of her or his spouse or children had been reduced from 10 lakh to 50,000 rupees.

Also, new rules of 2017 amended the provision of collection of royalty on bricks at outposts. As per the amendment, permit holder would deposit the yearly royalty amount to the Department in four quarterly installments. Also, royalty on bricks of non-commercial uses has now been forgiven. This would be relief for those who make bricks for their own use in the rural areas.

First published: June 21, 2017