Thursday, 24 November 2016

50 Villages In Ajmer On Development Road, Says Vaikundarajan

Over 50 villages in the district of Ajmer have been identified by the local authorities as mining-affected areas. The managing committee of Mineral Foundation Trust found that these villages suffer heavily due to lack of health and educational reforms. The villages are not connected by good roads and there is a shortage of drinking water. “To curb these problems, the managing committee will issue a programme where 10% of the royalty on minerals will be dedicated to the betterment of the villages,” informs Vaikundarajan, founder of VV Minerals India.
Ajmer is known to be the leading mining regions in the state for quartz, phosphorous, lead, building stones and similar minerals. Most villagers here work in the mines. The shortage of water affects the health of villagers and children in a great way. At this point, setting up a programme to improve the lifestyle of villagers and get them the basic requirements is the need of the hour.

“Taking all of this into consideration, the district administration has proposed ways to improve the health facilities, pollution control system and school education for children. The proposal will be presented to the council of the foundation,” adds Vaikundarajan. 

Friday, 11 November 2016

Underuse of Rare Earth Minerals

As per industry reports, the rare earth industry in India is underused and lies wasted. The Indian Rare Earth Industry is worth Rs. 90,000 crore of annual turnover.
As per estimates by Beach Minerals Producers Association, the industry can net a capital employment of about Rs 121,000 crore.
The rare earths found in India are one of the most significant ones. Collectively called Beach Sand Minerals (BSM), they include Ilmenite, Sillimanite, Garnet, Zircon, Monazite and Rutile and amount for almost 35 per cent of the world’s total beach sand mineral deposits.

"In 1998, they started freeing up the industry and in 2006, those minerals were taken off the prescribed substances list and for some reason, they have recently been put back on. So, the country has actually gone backwards. There is no justification," said Grant Smith, director-overseas operations at V. V. Minerals. "No one is getting the licences. It has been reserved specifically for PSUs through the DAE (department of atomic energy). So, at the moment, it is only the IndiaRare Earths and the Kerala operations."

"There is a perception here in India that monazite is an atomic mineral. It is actually not. Monazite is just a mineral that contains thorium and very very small amounts of uranium. But the major constituent in monazite is rare earth," said Smith. "In today’s world, China controls over 95 per cent of the rare earth market. India is not realizing any potential. You have to separate the mineral monazite from its constituents. None of the other rare earths have any thorium in them. They are associated in the ore body but not in the actual mineral."
C Swamydas, chief advisor for V V Minerals, said that proposals have been given to take on all the cost of setting up the plant, and even pay to let the atomic energy department put its own people process monazite. He added that, "We shall give the thorium (produced) to the government for free. They can store it for future use."

Though there is so much potential and scope, the industry lacks clear policies for beach and sand mining. This results in unclear rules and misleading on allegations of illegal sand mining beach mining companies.

Monday, 7 November 2016

Goa Government Lifts Mining Transportation Ban

Mining operations should be in full swing by the start of October. Prasanna Acharya, director of Mines and Geology, issued a statement informing the mining companies of the ban having been lifted.
The transportation of mineral by road was banned in the interest of public safety after some accidents on the main road came to light. On the request of locals, the government decided to ban transportation of minerals till monsoon had rescinded.
“Public safety is of utmost importance. With the lack of mining transportation roads in Goa, the trucks took to main road. A couple of accidents were reported by locals and the government was quick to take an action. Transportation was suspended till monsoon was over. The government also plans to construct a dedicated road for mining transportation,” says Vaikundarajan.