Auction of Mine Blocks in Rajasthan | 22 May 2024

Why in News?

The Rajasthan government has decided to expedite delineation work for the auction of minor and major blocks in the state.

Key Points

  • To combat illicit mining activities, the government will focus on getting ready and selling off numerous mining sites.
  • The drilling for mineral exploration and analysis of reports will help combat illegal mining of valuable minerals, leading to increased revenue and job opportunities in the state.
  • The government has asked officials to develop a water harvesting system in the offices and areas of the mineral department.
    • Additionally, officials were directed to ensure efficient operation of the e-filing system in department offices and reduce processing times.
  • Rajasthan is one of the richest states in availability and variety of minerals in the country, producing over 57 different minerals. The mines department earned a revenue of over Rs 7,490 crores during 2023-2024.
  • The mines department has drawn out a plan aimed at ensuring daily monitoring by preparing a road map for exploration, drilling, preparing blocks and plots for auction, making an auction calendar, and revenue collection.

Illegal Mining

  • Illegal mining is the extraction of minerals, ores, or other valuable resources from land or water bodies without the necessary permits, licenses, or regulatory approvals from government authorities.
    • It can also involve the violation of environmental, labor, and safety standards.
  • Laws Related to Mining in India:
    • The entry at serial No. 23 of List II (State List) to the Constitution of India mandates the state government to own the minerals located within their boundaries.
    • The entry at serial No. 54 of List I (Central List) mandates the central government to own the minerals within the exclusive economic zone of India (EEZ).
    • In pursuance to this Mines & Minerals (Development and Regulation) (MMDR) Act of 1957 was framed.
    • The power to frame policy and legislation relating to minor minerals is entirely delegated to the State Governments while policy and legislation relating to the major minerals are dealt by the Ministry of Mines under the Union Government.