Central Coalfields Limited (CCL) has seen rapid transformation under the leadership of Chairman and Managing Director (CMD) Gopal Singh. In an exclusive interview with The Sunday Guardian, Singh discussed in detail how the transformation was made possible and his plans for the company’s future. Excerpts:

Q. Central Coalfields Limited has become the fastest growing coal company in the country under your leadership. What major factors are responsible for this phenomenal growth in production that had stagnated from 2009 to 2013, at about 47 million tonne per annum (MTPA)?

A. During the period 2009-10 to 2012-13, the company’s coal production was stagnating at around 47-48 MTPA. The company had inventory (coal stock) of about 16 MT  (about 33 % of annual production) for years together and because of its age, coal stocks had indications of spontaneous heating at many places. Many ongoing projects had acute shortage of land as land owners were not giving physical possession of their land to CCL. The employees were demotivated and demoralised. The same company, with the same set of employees, has achieved unprecedented growth with a CAGR of 10.2% in the past three years (2014-17). In fact, 2016-17 was the third consecutive year when the company achieved its target.

We have redefined the priority of the company in view of the prevailing socio-economic milieu of Jharkhand. It is now centered on “Inclusive Growth” through a series of initiatives based on the “Kayakalp Model of Governance” which lays emphasis on the following:

A transparent, bold, ethical and philanthropic approach.

Training and development of sub-ordinates.

Discipline enforcement.

Innovation, automation -state-of-the-art technology

Democratic planning- Autocratic control.

The adoption of this model was the sole reason behind the complete turnaround of CCL. 

Q. What steps have you taken to ensure transparency in systems and processes and how have such steps helped in achieving your goals?

A. We are striving to make CCL a zero grievance company. To achieve this, a Samadhan Kendra (Single Window Grievance Redressal Cell) was established in April 2012 and is running successfully. Also, grievances, in general, have been grouped under 84 heads and simplified remedial measures have been compiled in a booklet named “SUNAHARE KAL KI ORE – Kayakalp Pustka” which was released by the Minister of State Coal, Power and NRE (I/C) on 31 December 2015. The simplified procedures are under implementation. Some of the other  initiatives in this regard are as under:

e-Grievance redressal.

Twitter Samadhan.

WhatsApp Samadhan.      

Mass promotion policy.

Joint Consultative Committee meeting on last Saturday of every month.

Company Welfare Board meeting on third Saturday of every month.

Standing Committees.

“Aap Ka Darbar” on  last Thursday of every month.

Other than these, various ICT initiatives have been taken to ensure transparency.

Q. Will you attribute the success to the support of the state and the government at the Centre too?

A. CCL could not have achieved this turnaround without the help of the state government and the Central government. The most critical input in the mining industry is land. Land authentication in 2014-16 was 11,360 acres compared to 1,180 acres in 2010-14. The law and order situation in Jharkhand has improved considerably in the past three years. The speed of processing  of forestry and environmental clearance proposals has improved greatly.

The pro-active approach and support of the Ministry of Coal has helped in the commissioning of long delayed projects in CCL:

Commissioning of Amrapali OC (25/35 MT) and Magadh OC (51/70 MT):  These two long delayed mega  projects were dedicated to the nation  by Piyush Goyal, Minister of State (I/C) for Power, Coal, New & Renewable Energy and Mines, in July 2014 and May 2015 respectively. Magadh OC is the proposed largest coal mine in Asia.

Piparwar Railway Siding: Long pending disputes have been resolved and the siding was completed in March 2017. The original date of commissioning was March 1998.

The support provided by the Ministry of Coal, Ministry of Railways and the state government has resulted in considerable progress in the construction of the Tori-Shivpur railway Line. This railway line will help in coal evacuation from the mega projects of Magadh, Amrapali, Chandragupta and Sanghmitra in North Karnapura coalfield. The original year of commission was 2006. The construction of the Tori-Shivpur railway line will now be completed by June 2018.

Financial Parameters: If we look at the financial table, the numbers are even more interesting. All parameters improved substantially, but the cost per ton (CPT) remained almost the same in absolute terms. If we adjust it for inflation, the CPT has decreased considerably.

Q. Have you also infused technology in day-to-day administration to curb the menace of the mining mafia?

A. ICT initiatives have been implemented on a large scale. Some of these initiatives are CCTV-RFID based Vehicle Tracking System, WAN, e-Tendering,  Reverse Auction, e-Procurement,  e-Payment,  e-Refund, e-Bill Monitoring,  e-File Tracking etc.

Coal mining in progress.Q. CCL has promoted sports in the state in a big way. What have been your other major CSR initiatives in the past few years? How have these helped you connect with the people at large?

A.CCL has taken various measures in the field of skill development, education, sports, health and drinking water for the well-being of the people of Jharkhand.

a.  “CCL ke Lal”: CCL provides opportunity to talented, hardworking and meritorious school boys from underprivileged background to join top engineering colleges in India. The boys are selected on the basis of an entrance examination and are provided free lodging, boarding, schooling and coaching for IIT and other engineering entrance exams by engineers of CCL who are IIT graduates.  Running in its fifth year, “CCL ke Lal” has come out with flying colours. In all, 35 boys who passed out of the “CCL Ke Lal” scheme are studying in engineering colleges, including IITs, NITs, etc. 

b. “CCL Ki Ladali”: CCL has replicated its highly successful “CCL Ke Lal” scheme for girls from April 2016. In all,  11 meritorious girls are provided free lodging, boarding, schooling and coaching for IIT and other engineering entrance exams.

This year, we are going to expand “CCL Ke Lal” and “CCL Ki Ladli” schemes. The number of  beneficiaries under these schemes is set to increase to 388.

c. ITI, Bhurkunda: CCL had set up ITI in Bhurkunda. The first batch of  17 students selected in 2014-15 not only completed their course successfully, but also got placed in CUMMINS India. The second batch of 18 students and the third batch of 19 students are undergoing training in electrician trade.

CCL could not have achieved a turnaround without the help of the state government and the Central government… The law and order situation in Jharkhand has improved considerably in the past three years. The speed of processing  of forestry and environmental clearance proposals has improved greatly. 

d. Multi Skill Development Centre (MSDC), Barkakana: The MSDC has been set up in Barkakana for imparting training in electrician and welding trade. Two batches with a total strength of 92 students have already completed training. In all, 70 students were selected by different companies in an “Employment fair” organised by CCL.

e. Mining Sirdarship Training to SC/ST PAPs with stipend: A new initiative of training for Mining Sirdarship to youths belonging to SC and STs has been started. These students are given stipends during the training programme. Presently,  the first batch of  25 students and the second batch of 40 students are undergoing training.

Coal production of CCL (MT) during the last three years

f. Pahal: We have been organising training camps for youths across villages of Jharkhand on a regular basis to help youths acquire skills and fitness level necessary for selection in the armed forces. Seven among these trained youths have been selected in the Indian Army.

g. Chalo School Chale (schooling for dropouts): 78 dropout students from Piparwar and Magadh Amrapali area have been identified. They have been admitted to St. Joseph School at Mander. CCL is supporting their education.

h.  Secondary Schools: CCL has been supporting 54 schools. These secondary schools have been providing education to almost 40,000 children across districts where CCL’s mines are located.

Sports Promotion:

a. Sports Academy / University: For the promotion and development of sports in Jharkhand, an MoU has been signed between the Jharkhand government and CCL to open a sports academy and  sports university at the Hotwar Mega Sports Complex, the first of its kind in the eastern India. In all, 178 students have been selected and are undergoing training in Khelgaon. The number of students in the University will eventually increase to 1,400. These students are being provided world-class facilities and training in different sports along with free schooling, boarding and lodging with the aim to produce an Olympic gold medallist in 2024.

b. “Chak De Jharkhand”: We have started Inter Village / Gramin Football Tournament in our command area. We have 200 teams in different villages in the command area of CCL.

Health and Sanitation:

a. Jan Aarogya Kendra (BPL Hospital, Ranchi): A hospital dedicated to BPL families is functioning in Gandhi Nagar, Ranchi. More such units shall be opened in other districts.

b. Mine Water  Management: The total number of present beneficiaries is about 1 lakh.

Future Plan:

We have taken the following steps for the management of mine water for the benefit of villages situated near our mines:

I. For accumulated water in mine voids:

For gainful utilisation of mine water by nearby villages/habitation situated in the command area of CCL, an MoU with the state government is under finalisation. In all, 55 villages having a population of 2,28,000 are likely to be benefited.

II. For mine discharge (surplus):

A)  10 projects which are discharging over 1000 cum./day have been identified for supply of water after treatment to the nearby villages. In all, 41 villages having a population of 59,000 situated around these 10 projects will be benefitted from the effective utilisation of mine water.

c. Divyang centres: CCL is successfully running Divyang Centres in Dhori and Piparwar areas.

d. CSR dispensaries.

e. Free medical camps: From April 2016 to March 2017, about 95,000 patients were treated in over 450 health camps organised by CCL.

CCL has been conscientious in its discharge of its obligations to various stakeholders. We are committed to playing a pro-active role in the socio-economic development of the country.

Q. What is your future plan for the next level of success?

A.Our success is based on implementation of the “Kayakalp Model of Governance”. This is an outstanding model which has resulted in complete transformation of the company. This is a dynamic model which aspires to improve the quality of life of all stakeholders by sustainable mining and value creation. Our motto is: Our motto is overall development of the poor, rural population and the labour. 

I strongly believe that precise policies and transparent transactions lead to transformative outcomes.


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