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Tags Current Affairs

Single window clearance for coal

Date: 12 January 2021 Tags: Bills & Laws

Issue

The union government has announced a new online single window clearance portal for the coal sector to speed up the operationalisation of coal mines.

 

Background

The announcement was made alongside the signing ceremony for the first tranche of coal blocks to be auctioned for commercial use.

 

Details

  • A single window clearance portal is aimed at allowing successful bidders for coal blocks to be able to obtain all required clearances, including environmental and forest clearances, from a single portal.

  • It will also include progress monitoring of their request without having to go to multiple authorities for clearance. The portal will allow successful bidders to operationalise coal mines more quickly.

  • Presently, about 19 major approvals, or clearances are required before starting the coal mine in the country. 

  • In the absence of unified platform for grant of clearances companies were required to approach different departments, leading to delay in operationalization of the coal mines.

 

Benefits of single window clearance

  • The coal sector has long sought a single window clearance system to help with quicker operationalisation, as obtaining the requisite clearances was taking over 2-3 years for successful bidders in many cases.

  • Some coal blocks auctioned as far back as 2015 has still not been operationalised due to delays in obtaining required clearances.

  • Parivesh mechanism for forest and environment related clearances would likely be merged into the single window clearance mechanism.

 

Parivesh

  • Pro Active Responsive facilitation by Interactive and Virtuous Environmental Single window Hub is a Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change initiative for single window clearances of Environment, Forests, and Wildlife and Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) Clearances.

  • It automates the entire tracking of proposals which includes online submission of a new proposal, editing/updating the details of proposals, and displays status of the proposals at each stage of the workflow.

  • PARIVESH enables project proponents, citizens to view, track and interact with scrutiny officers, generates online clearance letters, online mailers, and alerts to state functionaries in case of delays beyond stipulated time for processing of application.

 

Benefits

  • Single registration and single sign-in for all types of clearances (i.e. Environment, Forest, Wildlife, and CRZ)

  • Unique-ID for all types of clearances required for a particular project

  • Single Window interface for the proponent to submit applications for getting all types of clearances (i.e. Environment, Forests, Wildlife and CRZ clearances)

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