New Delhi : Mineral assessment is a continuous process and a number of exploration agencies like Geological Survey of India [GSI], Mineral Exploration Corporation Limited [MECL], Atomic Minerals Directorate for Exploration and Research [AMDER], State Departments of Geology and Mining [DGMs], State/Central Undertakings are engaged in exploration of mineral deposits in the country.
For mineral surveys in the country, GSI is the nodal agency to formulate exploration programmes of various agencies through Central Geological programming Board. GSI carries out mapping and systematic exploration for various mineral commodities under different stages e.g. ‘reconnaissance survey’ [G4], ‘preliminary exploration’ [G3] and ‘general exploration’ [G2] seamlessly based on the mineral potential following the guidelines of United Nations Framework Classification (UNFC) and Mineral Evidence and Mineral Content Rules (MEMC-2015) with an aim to augmenting mineral resource.
GSI has implemented Online Core Business Integrated System (OCBIS) to enable the broader geoscientific community and other stakeholders to easily access, view and utilize GSI data & information including mineral exploration data. The mineral exploration programmes executed by GSI are available in public domain (www.gsi.gov.in) in the form of Geological reports.
Further, Indian Bureau of Mines [IBM], a subordinate office of Ministry of Mines collects the exploration data from various agencies. On the basis of information of exploration and the results provided by different agencies or stakeholders, IBM publishes the National Mineral Inventory (NMI) of mineral resources in the country on an interval of once in five years. The information of reserve/resources of minerals is being published in public domain and available on IBM website.
Under the Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) Amendment Act, 2015, for major minerals, the mineral concession can be allotted through auctioning. The power to grant these mineral concessions vests in the State Governments. The extraction of minerals depends on the grant of the mineral concessions by the State Government and the utilisation of minerals depends on economic viability of the minerals.
This information was given by Minister of Mines, Coal and Parliamentary Affairs Pralhad Joshi in a written reply in Lok Sabha today.