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Distribution of Coal in India

  • Coal is a one of the important minerals which is mainly used in the generation of thermal power and smelting of iron ore.
  • Coal occurs in rock sequences mainly of two geological ages, namely Gondwana and tertiary deposits.
  • Lignite is a low-grade brown coal, which is soft with high moisture content. The principal lignite reserves are in Neyveli in Tamil Nadu and are used for generation of electricity.
  • Coal that has been buried deep and subjected to increased temperatures is bituminous coal. It is the most popular coal in commercial use. Metallurgical coal is high grade bituminous coal which has a special value for smelting iron in blast furnaces.
  • Anthracite is the highest quality hard coal. About 80 per cent of the coal deposits in India is of bituminous type and is of non-coking grade.
  • The most important Gondwana coal fields of India are in Damodar Valley. They lie in Jharkhand-Bengal coal belt and the important coal fields in this region are Raniganj, Jharia, Bokaro, Giridih, Karanpura. Jharia is the largest coal field followed by Raniganj.
  • The other river valleys associated with coal are Godavari, Mahanadi and Son.
  • The most important coal mining centres are Singrauli in Madhya Pradesh (part of Singrauli coal field lies in Uttar Pradesh), Korba in Chhattisgarh, Talcher and Rampur in Orissa, Chanda-Wardha, Kamptee and Bander in Maharashtra and Singareni and Pandur in Andhra Pradesh.
  • Tertiary coals occur in Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya and Nagaland. It is extracted from Darangiri, Cherrapunji, Mewlong and Langrin (Meghalaya); Makum, Jaipur and Nazira in upper Assam, Namchik- Namphuk (Arunachal Pradesh) and Kalakot (Jammu and Kashmir).
  • Besides, the brown coal or lignite occur in the coastal areas of Tamil Nadu, Pondicherry, Gujarat and Jammu and Kashmir.