The country’s premier public sector company and the world’s largest coal producer, Coal India Ltd (CIL), has come under fire from the government’s auditor for under-utilising the budgetary allocation for its corporate social responsibility (CSR) schemes.The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) has said in its report, tabled in Parliament on Wednesday, that the budget allocation of CIL for community and peripheral development was Rs 211.8 crore in the period from 2004 to 2010. This was 0.7% of the company’s aggregate net profit of Rs 31,062.3 crore.
“Even the allocated amount was not fully utilised as the utilisation of funds (Rs 153 crore) during 2004-10 fell short of budgeted allocation in all its subsidiaries, thus allowing the CSR activities to remain unfulfilled,” the CAG report said.
“CIL and its subsidiaries should evolve a mechanism to set up measurable targets with timeline so that performance on CSR activities can be monitored,” the CAG report recommended.
The audit observed that allocation of funds was below the norm of Rs 1 per tonne of coal produced in CIL’s five subsidiaries — Bharat Coking Coal, Northern Coalfields, Mahanadi Coalfields, Western Coalfields and South Eastern Coalfields.
It also found negligence in getting mandatory environmental clearance. “In all, 239 mines in seven coal-producing subsidiaries were working without environmental clearance and no prior clearances (were) obtained in 18 cases for increasing production,” the report said.
The audit also found that there was a backlog in backfilling and technical reclamation of 12,643 hectares of land in CIL’s seven subsidiaries. There was no effluent or sewage treatment plants in six coal mines.
The audit said that in 10 out of 18 open cast mines, there was violation of safety parameters and CIL was unable to achieve zero-harm target.