News: Union Home Minister has launched a Single Window Clearance Portal of the Ministry of Coal.
- Single Window Clearance Portal: The portal aims to allow successful bidders for coal blocks to be able to obtain all required clearances, including environmental and forest clearances, from a single portal with progress monitoring, instead of having to go to multiple authorities.
- Significance: The portal is in the spirit of Minimum Government and Maximum Governance. It would be a milestone for Ease of Doing Business in the Indian Coal Sector.
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What was the need of the Portal?
- Presently, about 19 major approval or clearances are required to be obtained before starting a coal mine in the country.
- Some of them include approval of Mining Plan and Mine Closure Plan, Grant of Mining Lease, Environment and Forest Clearances among others. These approvals or clearances are granted either by central or state governments.
- Hence, in the absence of a unified platform for grant of clearances/ approvals for starting of a coal mine, the project proponents are required to approach different administrative ministries and Government departments separately to apply for the requisite clearances leading to delay in operationalization of coal mines.