Anil Ambani-led Reliance Power (RPower) said on Monday that it has commenced coal production from its mines in Sasan, Madhya Pradesh, six months ahead of schedule.
Coal produced from the mines will be used to generate power from the 4,000-mw Sasan ultra mega power project, scheduled to start at the end of this calendar year.
The Sasan coal mines, which includes the controversial Moher and Moher-Amlohri extension coal blocks, were under the scanner of the central auditor Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG).
It had said last month that RPower gained thousands of crores of rupees in undue benefits from the government decision, allowing it to use surplus coal from these mines for another project it was not meant for.
"This is a milestone moment for Reliance," chairman Rpower, Anil Ambani said. "Scarcity of coal is one of the biggest challenges facing the power sector and we are developing the coal blocks to exacting international standards of operations, safety and productivity with the finest team available not only in the country but also overseas," Ambani said.
RPower is targeting to reach full 20 million tonnes per annum capacity in four years.
"We will be able to get 20 mt from these mines as a result of our efforts to optimise coal production by deploying latest and advanced mining technologies," he said.
Coal from these mines will be used to generate electricity at Sasan UMPP, the first 660 mw unit of which is expected to be commissioned towards the end of the year.
"Power from the Sasan plant will be supplied to seven states at R1.19 per unit, the lowest for any coal-based project in the country," chief executive J P Chalasani said.