After closure for nearly four years, the Steel Minister Virbhadra Singh has rededicated the Panna Diamond Mine of NMDC. The mines had remained closed for environmental reasons.
On the occasion of reopening of mine, Virbhadra Singh said that the project is not just very important for NMDC and Madhya Pradesh, but also prestigious for the country as a whole, for it is the only mechanized diamond mine in Asia.
Revealing production capacity of the mine as one lakh carats per annum, the minister said that with the reopening the Panna mine, at least part of the domestic demand of diamonds will be met.
The reopening of Panna Diamond mine was one of the main programmes to be accomplished during the first 100 days of the UPA Government.
Singh informed that NMDC is exploring for diamond reserves in Chattarpur District and coal deposits in Shahdole and Umaria Districts. It is in the process of acquiring mining lease for development of coal blocks. NMDC is also making efforts to locate alternate diamond resources in the vicinity of Panna.
The minister also thanked the state government for extending unflinching support for the reopening of the diamond mine.