Mineral Production Increases by 11.83 Per Cent During 2010-2011
Consultative Committee of Ministry of Mines held
The total value of mineral production (excluding atomic minerals during 2010-11 has been estimated at about Rs.2 lakh crore which shows an increase of about 11.83% over that of the previous year. This information was given by Dr. Dinsha Patel, Minister of Mines to the Members of Parliament in the Consultative Committee Meeting attached to the Ministry of Mines held here today. The Minister informed the Members that India produces as many as 87 minerals, which include 4 fuels, 10 metallic, 47 non-metallic, 3 atomic and 23 minor minerals (including building and other materials). These minerals are valuable natural resources and the Ministry of Mines was fully conscious of the need for their careful management in the national interest as also in the interest of the people of the area in which these mineral occur, Shri Patel said.
About the Geological Survey of India (GSI), the Minister said that GSI was established in the year 1851 to locate coal deposits in India by East India Company. During the last 160 years, the activities of this premier Earth Science Institution have grown manifolds and so have its functions and responsibilities. Shri Patel informed the Members that the activities of GSI had been streamlines and put under five Missions and three Support Systems. The Missions-I essentially deals with base line geoscientific data generation, the Mission-II activities relate to assessment of Natural Resources, the Mission-III deals with all activities related to geoinformatics, the Mission-IV addresses fundamental and multidisciplinary geosciences and special studies, while the Mission-V is dedicated to training and capacity building. The Minister said that GSI was now progressing well towards achieving e-governance in all spheres of its activities. A Quality Management Cell has started functioning from GSI, New Delhi office with the mandate of improving the Quality of the GSI services and its products to match with the International standards, the Minister informed the Members.
The Minister further informed the Members that the extensive surveys carried out by GSI in the offshore area in the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) and Territorial Waters of India, for carrying out marine and coastal surveys. The marine surveys were aimed at locating offshore mineral deposits and unravelling the evolutional history of the sea bed. In order to equip the GSI with modern facilities for carrying out sophisticated marine surveys in deep waters, the GSI was in the process of acquiring one new ocean going blue water vessel with the latest state-of-the-art on-board instruments, besides, a geotechnical vessel for coastal surveys, he said.
Shri Patel said that GSI had entered into a number of MoUs with various countries for having International Cooperation in the fields of Mineral Exploration, Natural Hazard assessment, Capacity Development etc with the basic aim to augment mineral production. The Minister informed the Consultative Committee Members that the Ministry of Mines and GSI were working together to develop the GSI Training Institute into a Centre of Excellence. He said that the GSI Training Institute had started operating in most of the States through its Field Training Centres (FTC) and Regional Training Institutes (RTI), where earth scientists not only from GSI but from other State Departments, Public Sector Undertakings, Private Organisations as well as SAARC and other countries were being groomed, Shri Patel said.
Shri Deoraj Singh Patel, Ramen Deka, Members of Parliament from Lok Sabha, Shri Rudra Narayan Pany, Member of Parliament from Rajya Sabha and Shri Kameshwar Baitha, Permanent Special Invitee attended the Consultative Committee Meeting.