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The government said it is likely to auction coal blocks for commercial mining this financial year and is working out details for the same. The move follows the recent successful auction of coal blocks for captive use to companies, which fetched the government over Rs Two lakh crore. ¨It (auction of coal blocks for commercial mining) is likely to happen in the current financial year. The details are being worked out,¨ Coal Secretary Anil Swarup said. The government had earlier said it will allow commercial mining of coal by private companies after allocating mines to public sector companies and auctioning to specific end users.
¨First, you give it to the state and central PSUs. Thereafter, you make a pool of all actual users and have an auction. While preserving the character of Coal India, you then start exploring the possibility of commercial mining,¨ Finance Minister Arun Jaitley had earlier said.