Friday, 24 August 2012

Ashok Chawla Committee on Allocation of Natural Resources

The Ashok Chawla Committee had been set up to in early 2011 to suggest transparent and corruption-free process for allocation of natural resources. The report of the Committee has been hanging fire since it was submitted in May 2011 and accepted by the Group of Ministers headed by Pranab Mukherjee at its meeting on October 15, 2011. What is even more shocking is the failure of the Government to put this important report in public domain for debate despite repeated requests from various stakeholders.

The Committee has recommended:
  1. following a competitive bidding route for allocation of coal blocks, 
  2. switching to open acreage licensing policy for allocation of oil and gas blocks:  would bring exploration and production business environment on par with global standards. Under the open acreage policy, an exploration company can express its interest in a block any time as opposed to the current system of periodic auction of blocks by the government.
  3. recommended allowing independent mining firms to take part in the auctions for captive blocks, with suitably notified groups of end user firms. 
  4. Create a platform for transaction of coal. “This platform could be owned by Coal India Limited (CIL) to meeting current regulatory needs. The surplus coal from captive mines could be sold to the platform for onward sale to registered users. This would be an extension of the current policy that allows excess captive production to be sold by CIL and would also need to be examined in Ministry of Coal. Imported coal could also be offered through the coal transaction platform,
  5. Create a trading platform/exchange for developing a robust and transparent market for natural gas with regulatory oversight being exercised by the downstream regulator, the Petroleum and Natural Gas Regulatory Board (PNGRB).
  6. making public the minutes of the meeting of the Standing Linkage Committee (Long Term) pertaining to allocation decisions on coal, 
  7. putting in public domain the minutes of the managing committee (MC) for oil and gas blocks  
  8. make the Directorate General of Hydrocarbons (DGH) an independent entity.
The Chawla Committee Report is in the news wrt the 'Presidential Reference' regarding 2G scam. The GoI in August 2012, told the Supreme Court that the report was still under consideration, and it had not accepted the reccos of the Committee.

To know about past controversies on natural resource exploration, esp wrt gas, please read the following post.



  1. Do you happen to have a copy of the Chawla Committee Report?

  2. I dont have the report, actually I dont think it has been released publicly. The above info has been taken from news reports.

  3. thanks buddy!!!!

  4. good work! If somebody can provide web link to the report?