Chandigarh: Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal on Wednesday wrote to his Jharkhand counterpart Arjun Munda, requesting him to find a solution to the ongoing agitation over a coal mine in Pakur district, that has resulted in halting of coal supply to Punjab's power plants.

Badal requested Munda to resolve the issue involving Panem Coal Mines at the earliest to pave way for the smooth and uninterrupted supply of coal to Punjab, that has been currently halted due to ongoing political agitation.

The power scenario has been adversely hit due to non-supply of coal, and it could not be allowed to deteriorate further, wrote Badal.

The Jharkhand Vikas Morcha-Prajatantrik Chief Babulal Marandi, along with former Deputy Chief Minister Stephen Marandi, is leading a protest seeking rehabilitation of people affected by the Panem mines, a joint venture of the Punjab State Electricity Board (now PSPCL) and EMTA Group of Companies.

ETMA group, which mines about 7 million tonnes of coal from the Pachwara mines in Jharkhand for state's power plants, had warned of stopping supplies due to the agitation.

Pachwara (Central) coal block in Pakur district was allotted to PSEB (now PSPCL) in the year 2002 and was being operated by Panem Coal Mines Limited, a joint venture company of PSEB and EMTA Coal Limited.

Badal apprised Munda that the captive coal block met substantial part of requirement of coal for thermal power stations in Punjab and PSPCL power stations had been receiving 5-6 coal rakes daily, but the supplies had been disrupted recently due to local agitation.

(Agencies)

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