Despite concerns over the payment dues from power utilities including NTPC and resistance from employees within the company, the department of disinvestment (DoD) may go firm with its plans to disinvest another 10% in state-owned Coal India Limited (CIL) in the next few months.
Divestment of a 10% government’s equity in CIL alone would help in meeting more than half of the Rs. 40,000-crore disinvestment target set by the government for the current financial year.
Reacting on reports of the ongoing row between CIL and NTPC casting a shadow over CIL’s divestment plans, a senior government official said: “These are routine issues, which are already being dealt but that does not mean that the government’s disinvestment plans be changed.”
Both CIL and the coal ministry have flagged reservations about a stake sale in the company till issues like Rs. 9,000- crore dues owed by electricity utilities are resolved.
An Inter-ministerial Group (IMG), earlier this month, already approved a 10% equity sale in the coal PSU which is expected to fetch close to R20,000 crore to the government. The government, at present holds a 90% stake in CIL.