South Eastern Coalfields Limited (SECL) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Coal India Limited. It is one of the largest government-owned coal producers in the world. SECL is one of the highest coal producing companies of India. The coal mines of SECL are spread across the central Indian states of Chhatisgarh and Madhya Pradesh, hence the company’s CSR activities focus on the underprivileged people residing in these states.
SECL operates 67 coal mines, of which 41 coal mines lies in Chhatisgarh, while the rest are situated in Madhya Pradesh. Among these 67 coal mines, 46 mines are worked by underground method of mining while the rest are opencast mines. For effective administrative control and operation, the coal mines at SECL have been divided into three groups viz Central India coalfields (CIC), Korba coalfields and Mand Raigarh Coalfields.
CSR Spending in FY 2022-23
Chhattisgarh-based Coal India subsidiary SECL has spent more than Rs 260 crores via CSR on various sectors in the state of Chhattisgarh between 2018-19 and 2022-23.
The company has undertaken CSR initiatives in a wide range of areas to create greater impact in the lives of people. In the past 5 years, the company has utilised its CSR funds mostly focusing on environmental sustainability, education, healthcare, rural development projects, sanitation and providing support to flagship government programs like Swachh Vidyalaya Abhiyan, Swachh Bharat Mission and Clean Ganga Mission among others.
In the FY 2022-23, SECL spent Rs 46.11 crore towards CSR activities mainly focused on the states of Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh.
Launch of the SECL CSR App
In July this year, SECL launched a CSR app for better implementation of various social welfare programs and activities carried out under its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and to make the same accessible to the public. The CSR App can be accessed through the link available on the SECL website.
The App was launched by Gajanan Deorao Asole, Part Time Non-Official Director and Chairman, CSR Committee, at the 338th SECL Board Meeting held on Friday, July 14 at New Delhi. The launch of this CSR app is expected to add more fairness and transparency in the CSR efforts of the company through digitization.
Through the app, people will be able to get information related to the annual expenditure incurred by SECL on CSR activities, total number of activities carried out, last year’s performance, photo-videos of activities etc. Along with this, the facility of giving suggestions and feedback has also been provided in the app.
South Eastern Coalfields Ltd has announced that it will be developing rooftop and ground mounted solar power projects of 600 MW capacity in the coming years as part of its strategy to expand and diversify its business and achieve the “Net Zero Energy” goal. The strategy is in line with the larger goal of “Panchamrit” announced by India’s Prime Minster Narendra Modi at CoP-26 to achieve Net Zero Emissions by 2070. SECL, the Miniratna PSU, is planning to develop the above projects at a cost of more than Rs.1000 crores.
Solar power projects of more than 180 MW are already in various phases of development in the operational areas of SECL spread over Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh. The Indian coal major has recently commissioned rooftop solar projects of 580 kWp capacity in Johilla, Jamuna-Kotma and Kusmunda Areas. At Johilla Area, the commissioned capacity is about 280 kWp. Solar panels have been installed at Administrative Building GM office, SECL-run Kendriya Vidyalaya, Regional Hospital and at Area’s Guesthouse. The project will generate about 4,20,000 units of electricity saving about Rs 21 lakh annually in power expenditure.
The largest two solar projects under implementation are of 40 MW capacity each. A 40 MW ground mounted, grid connected solar PV plant is being developed on company’s own land in Bhatgaon and Bishrampur areas located in Chattisgarh’s Surajpur district. Plans are on to install another 40 MW ground mounted solar PV plant in Johilla area in Madhya Pradesh.
Coal India Ltd has set an ambitious target of achieving net-zero status by installing 3000 MW capacity renewable energy projects by 2026 as part of a broader plan to reduce the company’s carbon footprint and ensure sustainability. SECL contributed around one-fourth of CIL’s total coal production in FY 2022-23. It is promoting renewable energy to reduce the carbon footprint of coal mining and move towards the goal of net zero carbon emissions.
Latest CSR initiatives
In July this year, SECL announced that it has decided to invest a whopping Rs. 169 crores for tree plantation Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh, the states in which it operates. The plantation will be carried out for a period of five years from FY 2023-24 to 2027-28 with its subsequent maintenance of 4 years for each consecutive year of plantation.
For execution of the project, the company has signed Memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Chhattisgarh Rajya Van Vikas Nigam and Madhya Pradesh Rajya Van Vikas Nigam. As per the MoU, SECL will spend Rs. 131.52 crore in Chhattisgarh and Rs. 38.11 crore in Madhya Pradesh for enhancing greenery in the central Indian states.
Six to twelve months old (polypot) plants will be used for the plantation work. Among the saplings that will be planted are different species including fruit bearing trees like Jamun, Imli, Bel, Mango, Sitaphal etc., and medicinal/ herbal plants like Neem, Amla, Karanj etc.
In addition to these, trees with high timber value such as Teak, Sal, Bamboo, Babool, Sissoo, Safed Sirus and ornamental or avenue plants like Gulmohar, Kachnar, Amaltas, Peepal, Jharul etc. will also be planted. Keeping in view the needs of the local communities, species of plants will be selected while paying heed to suggestions from local villagers.
Education and Healthcare
SECL’s area of operation being Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, the PSU focuses on providing healthcare facilities to the underprivileged population through CSR. SECL has provided CT scan and MRI Machines to Chhattisgarh Institute of Medical Sciences, Bilaspur, and a CT scan machine to Government Medical College, Ambikapur.
The company has taken initiatives to develop education infrastructure in government schools in Chhattisgarh by renovating and rebuilding schools, building hostels, developing smart-classes and providing desk and benches for the students.
Smart-classes in Government schools of Chhattisgarh
With SECL’s CSR support, smart classes have been set-up in 500 government schools of Korba district at an expenditure of about Rs 9 crore through the District Collector of Korba. The beneficiaries are mainly children belonging to tribal areas and underprivileged background. At least 113 smart classes have been developed through the district administration Raigarh in government schools built within 25 km radius of SECL’s office in Raigarh district. Apart from this, 83 smart-class facilities have been developed in schools in Raigarh, Dharamjaigarh, and Kharsia tehsils of Raigarh district.
Free residential coaching for NEET
SECL has recently announced that it will provide free residential medical coaching to students of Class 12th under its CSR initiative, “SECL ke Sushrut”. The company will mentor and provide coaching to students to help them prepare for the national medical entrance exam – NEET.
The move is expected to benefit students from poor economic background, especially in villages in coal belt areas of Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh.
Under the programme coaching will be provided to a total batch of 35 students in partnership with a Bilaspur-based private coaching institute. The program will be residential with regular national-level test series and mentoring and will include lodging and boarding facilities.
Empowering the specially abled and youths
For empowering the specially abled or Divyangjans, the company has built a Skill Development Training Centre with a 100-bed hostel in Bilaspur.
With a focus on skill development and making India’s youth job ready, the coal major has undertaken training programmes for around 1000 youths though Central Institute of Petrochemicals Engineering and Technology (CIPET) Korba.
The company is taking up projects to develop rural areas in Chhattisgarh through CSR. It has built roads for faster communication, pipelines to supply water from the mines to adjacent villages which face water scarcity, and constructed toilets. SECL has also implemented and supported projects in the areas of Drinking water, Livelihood enhancement projects etc for villages.
In the FY 2021-22, SECL granted an amount of Rs.199.71 (lakhs), and the centre is established at the premise of the Nagar Palika Parishad, Deepka, in Chhattisgarh’s Korba District.