The Ministry of Coal has launched the Khanan Prahari mobile app, revolutionizing the fight against illicit coal mining activities.
GS II: Government policies and Interventions
Dimensions of the Article:
- Khanan Prahari: Empowering Citizens Against Illegal Mining
- Status of Coal Mining in India
Khanan Prahari: Empowering Citizens Against Illegal Mining
- Innovative Reporting App: Khanan Prahari is a mobile app enabling citizens to actively report instances of illegal coal mining by submitting geo-tagged photos and textual information.
- Comprehensive System: The app is complemented by the Coal Mine Surveillance & Management System (CMSMS) web portal, developed in collaboration with Bhaskaracharya Institute of Space Application & Geoinformatics and Central Mine Planning and Design Institute.
- Public Participation: This initiative combines advanced technology with public involvement to address illegal mining effectively.
- Active Engagement: The public’s active engagement is evident with 483 complaints lodged through the app, showcasing their commitment to curbing illegal mining.
- Incident Reporting: Users can report illegal mining incidents by capturing photos and providing comments.
- Confidentiality: The app ensures the confidentiality of users’ identities, prioritizing privacy.
- Complaint Tracking: Complainants receive a unique complaint number to track the progress of their reports easily.
Status of Coal Mining in India
- Coal Importance: India ranks as the world’s second-largest coal producer and possesses the fifth-largest coal deposits globally. Coal, often called ‘Black Gold,’ is a crucial fossil fuel.
- Import Dependency: Despite significant coal reserves, India imports coal due to its high consumption. Coal imports surged by 30% in 2022-23.
- Major Producing States: Key coal-producing states include Jharkhand, Odisha, Chhattisgarh, West Bengal, Madhya Pradesh, and Telangana.
- Early Beginnings: India’s coal mining history spans 220 years, starting in 1774 with the East India Company in Raniganj Coalfield.
- Growth Catalyst: The introduction of steam locomotives in 1853 propelled coal production.
- Post-Independence: National Coal Development Corporation (NCDC) formed in 1956 for organized industry growth.
- Nationalization: Nationalization of coking coal mines (1971-72) and non-coking mines (1973) aimed at addressing mining concerns and labor conditions.
- Post-Nationalization: Demand-supply gaps minimal till 1991; liberalization reforms in 1993 led to captive consumption allocation.
- Modernization: Coal Mines (Special Provisions) Act, 2015 enabled auction-based coal allocation; 2018 allowed private firms into commercial mining.