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Rediff.com  » Business » Neyveli Lignite limps back to normal

Neyveli Lignite limps back to normal

Last updated on: July 07, 2006 13:00 IST

On Friday, mining activity and power generation at Neyveli Lignite Corporation slowly returned to normal. The attendance too was normal, sources said.

Total normalcy was expected to be restored by Friday evening as it would take another 10 hours for generation to reach its full capacity of 2490 MW, NLC sources said.

About 20,000 employees of the Neyveli Lignite Corporation, who were on strike since Tuesday, called off their protest on Thursday night and reported for duty.

The workers, who went on indefinite strike protesting the Centre's decision to divest 10 per cent equity in NLC, withdrew the stir following Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's decision to put on hold the disinvestment of NLC and other public sector units.

Power generation and lignite mining, which were paralysed because of the strike, commenced at 9.30 pm on Thursday.

NLC is the major power supplier to the southern grid comprising Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and the Union Territory of Pondicherry.

Many rural areas in Tamil Nadu were enveloped in darkness as power was not flowing from Neyveli.

"The NLC suffered a loss of about Rs 20 crore (Rs 200 million) because of the strike," the PSU's Chief General Manager P Babu Rao told PTI.

The decision of withrawal of strike was announced by S Raja Vanian, general secretary of NLC DMK Trade Union, at a public meeting in Neyveli. All political parties in Tamil Nadu had voiced their protests against the Centre's move to divest stakes in one of the biggest PSUs in the state.

On Thursday, Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam threatened to pull out of the United Progressive Alliance government at the Centre on the issue following which the prime minister decided to put on hold disinvestment of NLC as well as other PSUs. 

On Thursday, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister and DMK chief M Karunanidhi spoke to Congress President Sonia Gandhi and requested her to prevail upon the government to revoke the disinvestment decision.

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