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SCCL to shut its sole underground mine in Yellandu?

SCCL to shut its sole underground mine in Yellandu?
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This move has put in question the company’s very presence in the Yellandu area of Khammam district, as hundreds of workers are set lose their jobs.The...

Kothagudem: The Singareni Collieries management is reportedly getting ready to shut down its only underground mine, 21 Incline, as it appears to be giving importance to overground activities.

This move has put in question the company’s very presence in the Yellandu area of Khammam district, as hundreds of workers are set lose their jobs.The SCCL had been gradually, over a period of time, shutting its mines and reducing the work force. The coal activity in Yellandu can be traced to 1871 when Dr Willaim Kings first found the black pearl or diamond.

The underground mines in Yellandu were spread out in Strutfit Incline, Romped New 23 Incline, 24 Incline, 21 Fit Mine, Polampalli Mine, JK 1,2,3 5, No.2 Basti, Manuakota bus-stand, 21 Fit Area, Hangar Mine.

These mines employed about 15,000 workmen. Several families from Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and other States had migrated to Yellandu to take up work in the collieries.

In 1920, the company was named Singareni Collieries. It progressed as a government undertaking spread over four districts. Eight years later, the Singareni head office was set up, from where its activities were conducted.

It rose to become a national-level organisation employing lakhs of persons directly and indirectly. Now, Yellandu town with no SCCL workers is presenting a deserted look.

The process of shutting down units in SCCL virtually began in March 1938 on the Moharrum day when 43 persons, including some Britishers and Indian miners, were killed in a grave accident in Strutfit Mine. Following a fall in coal generation in Yellandu, the head office was shifted to Kothagudem.

The management gradually began shutting underground mines and shifting its workers to other areas, citing loss of revenue as an excuse, and with a view to encourage its over-ground coal-mining, where modern machinery is being used to unearth coal. In the process, less manpower is being pressed into service to generate more coal.

Now the stage is set for the closure of its lone underground mine 21 Incline. The Joint Action Committee of the SCCL workers’ organisations and various political parties have been agitating urging the management to drop its plan to close the mine. Now the agitations are likely to be intensified.

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