By Bizodisha Bureau, Bhubaneswar, December 25, 2018: The Narendra Modi government led government at the center has deferred the auction of two iron ore mines having reserves of 93.87 million tonnes in Odish without giving any reason officials said.

The two iron ore mines are Chandiposhi iron ore block in Sundergarh district, which has reserves of 47.07 million tonnes (MT) and the Purheibahal block has reserves of 46.80 MT, officials added.

The notice inviting tender for both the mines was issued on February 23.

The government so far has auctioned 50 mines, so far since 2015 and is likely to mop up a revenue of Rs 1.81 lakh crore over the lease period.

To ensure transparency in the mineral sector, Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) Amendment Bill, 2015 was passed by Parliament in 2015.

In a bid to give a push to the auctions, the Centre had earlier said it was considering granting all approvals, including environmental clearance, to mineral blocks before putting them up for sale.

The government had earlier said unless issues related to green clearances and land rights are addressed upfront, India may not make much progress in auctioning mineral blocks in the future.

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