20 iron ore mines auctioned till date: Minister

The government said 20 iron ore blocks having reserves of 583.057 million tonne (MT) have been auctioned till date.

The government has notified Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) Amendment Act, 2015 to streamline grant of mining leases so as to maintain sufficient availability of iron ore for steel sector, Steel Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said in a written reply to Lok Sabha.

"As on date, 20 blocks of iron ore have been successfully auctioned with a reserve of 583.057 MT," he said.

"To ensure supply of raw material by timely auction of leases expiring in 2020...the central government has amended the Mineral Conservation and Development Rules, 2017, making it mandatory for the lease holders to carry out G2 level exploration over the entire mineralised area by April, 1 2019," he added.