New Delhi (Agencies): The proposed new mines legislation that envisages 26 per cent profit sharing by miners with project-hit people, among other things, is likely to be placed again before a Group of Ministers (GoM).

"We have sought a date from Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee. One more meeting of GoM is required before finalising the draft," said Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Mines Dinsha Patel.

The ministerial group, headed by Mukherjee, has already met four times on the proposed Mines and Mineral Development and Regulation Act, 2010.

The Law Ministry is vetting the draft bill while meetings with various stakeholders, including industry, will be done, he said further.

Patel said his Ministry would press for introducing the legislation in the Budget session of Parliament.

The new legislation proposes to make it compulsory for miners to share 26 per cent of their profits with project-affected people, among other things.

FIMI, the industry and apex mining body, had demanded that the provision related to profit-sharing should be watered down and corporate giants like Tatas and Jindals had suggested that instead of profit, the sharing should be based on the cost of operation.

Slamming the proposed levy, the two firms had asked the government not to charge it as a separate tax, saying that social obligation is a part of the operating cost of a company.

For such profit-sharing, the GoM has proposed creation of a District Mineral Foundation for payment of the benefits to locals.

During its fourth meeting, the GoM had asked Mines Ministry to toughen the clauses on competitive bidding for prospecting and mining leases to address the concerns of states like Jharkhand and Orissa.

States have opposed a section of the bill, which says that first come first serve route will be adopted for granting large area prospecting licences (LAPLs) instead of competitive bidding method.

The LAPLs permit companies to prospect for mineral deposits in large tracts of land — 5,000 sq km and above for eight years.

The 10-member GoM also include Home Minister P Chidambaram, Steel Minister Virbhadra Singh and Law Minister V Moily.