Integrated steel plant at Bayyaram: Bhatti
Says not even a kg of iron ore will be taken to VSP Beneficiation and pellet plants will be set up with...
- Says not even a kg of iron ore will be taken to VSP
- Beneficiation and pellet plants will be set up with an investment of Rs 1,000 cr providing 1,500 jobs
- CM also 'assures' ore will not be taken away to any other place
The Memo issued on April 17 by the government clearly states that in the first phase a state-of-the-art beneficiation plant and a pellet plant shall be set up in Bayyaram of Khammam district
Hyderabad: In an attempt to pull the curtains down on the raging controversy over allotting Byyaram mines to Visakhapatnam Steel Plant (VSP), Deputy Speaker Bhatti Vikramarka on Saturday said that the government would construct an integrated steel plant in Khammam district. He categorically said that not even a kg of the iron ore would be taken to VSP.
At a hurriedly convened press conference Bhatti, after consulting the officials, said that the Memo issued on April 17 by the government clearly stated that as per the joint venture agreement between AP Mineral Development Corporation and Rashtriya Ispat Nigam Ltd (RINL), in the first phase a state-of-the-art beneficiation plant and a pellet plant shall be set up in Bayyaram of Khammam district.
The beneficiation plant will grade the mined ore, remove silicon and mica from it and will manufacture pellets. The Deputy Speaker said that beneficiation plant and pellet plant will be set up with an investment of Rs 1000 crore and will provide employment to Rs 1500 people. Depending upon the iron ore quantity that is available in the mines, an integrated steel plant with one million tones per annum capacity will be set up at Bayyaram. This plant will be set up with an investment of Rs 4000 crore and will provide employment to about 4000 people.
He appealed to the political parties not to try to gain political advantage out of the issue. "If they read the Memo issued by the government they will understand things very clearly. There is no question of taking out any iron ore from Byarram to VSP," he added. The Deputy Speaker asked the APMDC to speed up the process and enter into a new joint venture agreement between APMDC and RINL for the purpose of supply of iron ore from Bayyaram mines to establish a beneficiation plant under phase-1 and an integrated plant under phase-2 by RINL.
For mining the ore, the state government has allotted 2,500 hectares in Gudur reserve forest of Warangal district and another 2500 hectares in Bayyaram in Khammam district, 341.93 hectares in Yerraballi village of Bheemadevarappli mandal in Karimnagar district, 304.185 hectares in Raidurg in Anantapur district and 1752.11 hectares in Obulapuram village in Anantapur distirct.
The process of exploration, officials said, would be taken up in the three areas after seeking permission from the forest department. A senior official said, "As no exploratory studies were conducted in these areas, they are still not sure about the quantity and quality of iron-ore that would be available in these captive mines. It may not be of high grade."
The process of completing formalities is expected to take at least seven to eight months. It is estimated that the mines hold about 60 million metric tons of iron ore reserves.
It may be mentioned here that in February 2009, the APMDC had entered into Joint Venture with Rakshana Steels for the development of Bayyaram Mines. In December 2010 the state government cancelled the GO which was challenged by Rakshana Steel but the court upheld the government decision.A In July 2012 Government cancelled the Joint Venture agreement with Rakshana Steels and when challenged the court upheld this decision also.
Interestingly a little before Bhatti made this announcement, a TDP delegation led by MP Nama Nageswara Rao called on Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy and submitted a memorandum asking him to set up the steel plant at Bayyaram. Kiran, they said, responded favourably and assured them that the ore would not be taken away to any other place.