The Centre of Indian Trade Unions vehemently condemns the decision of the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) of the Narendra Modi Govt to open the coal mining sector for commercial mining by private and foreign corporate that too without any restriction on pricing and end-use. So long private sector was allowed to mine coal only for captive use in power, cement and steel industry and debarred from selling the coal in market.

As such above retrograde decision by the Modi Govt is nothing but a total reversal of the four decade long policy of nationalized coal mining which contributed immensely to industrial development as well as expansion of the power generation capacity of the country’s economy. Such opening up of coal mining sector for unhindered exploitation by private and foreign corporate without any restriction on pricing and end-use will definitely pave the way for weakening and privatization of public sector coal industry, both Coal India and Singareni Collieries Ltd, thereby affecting the coal production for both public and industrial consumption as a whole; proliferation of private coal mining will also severely compromise the rights and safety of the workers deployed in private mining; further withdrawal of all restriction in pricing of coal and their end-use will increase the burden on the people many times. Such unrestricted private mining of coal will also severely impair energy security of the country in a big way. This a follow up move of the Modi Govt in amending the Coal Mine Nationalisation Act 1973 in 2016 through Coal Mines (Special Provisions) Bill 5 which was vehemently opposed by the coal trade unions through industrywide strike action and also by Left MPs in Parliament.

CITU denounce such disastrous move by the Modi Govt which militates against the interest of the national economy and mass of the people. CITU calls upon the trade union movement and the coal unions in particular to build up strong opposition to such gross anti-workers, anti-people and anti-national move throughout the country. CITU welcomes the immediate response of the All India Coal Workers’ Federation(CITU) through organizing protest demonstrations within nex few days in the coal mines throughout the country in both Coal India and Singareni Collieries Ltd.

Issued by
(Tapan Sen)
General Secretary

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