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The Indian Bureau of Mines (IBM) came into existence on the 1st March, 1948 as a consequence of the recommendations of the National Mineral Policy Conference.  From a small beginning as a purely advisory body, the IBM has emerged into a premier National Organisation dealing with practically all aspects of the country’s mining and mineral industry; fulfilling the dual role of enforcing statutory provisions as well as engaging in various development activities.  In fact IBM has completed over 55 years of its existence and dedicated service to the nation towards mineral conservation, systematic development of minerals, environment protection and welfare of mankind.

 FUNCTIONS

With the expansion of mining industry and gradual adoption of updated technology in large mines, the functions of IBM were reviewed in 1966 and thereafter in 1981. The responsibilities and activities  of   IBM  are guided  by  a 12 point organisational charter laid down  by  the Government  of  India  in 1981. A significant addition to its charter was made in 1987 when responsibility of approval of mining plans and mining schemes was entrusted to IBM on behalf of the Central Government. The IBM’s role in updating the national inventory of mineral resources has further been stressed in the National Mineral Policy enunciated in March, 1993. The role of IBM in the protection of environment has also further been strengthened by the notification under Environment (Protection) Act 1986 and Environment (Protection) Rules 1986 as well as in the Mineral Conservation Development Rules, 1988.

Having regard to changing scenario in the mineral sector in the wake of liberalisation of policy, concern of environment protection and ensuring systematic and scientific mining, the mandate for IBM has been further revised in the year 2003 vide Resolution notified under Gazette of India No. 22.03.03 No 12 Part-I, Section I, Page 430, 431 (Hindi), 482, 483 (English). There have been numerous developments since that date which was necessitated a review of the role and scope of the functions of the IBM to make the IBM a competent instrument for the implementation of the National Mineral Policy, 2008, and to bring its charter in line with the contemporary situation..  Accordingly, based on the suggessions in the report of Committee for review and restructuring of the functions and role of IBM,  Government of India modified the present charter of functions of IBM vide Government Resolution no.39/49/2014-M.III dated 3rd November, 2014, and published in the Gazette of India on 22nd November, 2014.

The modified Charter of Functions of Indian Bureau of Mines 

The objective of the IBM is to promote systematic and scientific development and optimum utilisation of mineral resources of the country (both on-shore and off-shore). 

In order to achieve this objective the charter of functions of Indian Bureau of Mines is as follows: 

  1. To collect, collate, and organise into a database, all information on exploration, prospecting, mines and minerals in the country in the shape of a National Mineral Information Repository and take steps to publish and disseminate the same;
  2. Function as the National Technical Regulator in respect of the mining sector, and lay down regulations,procedures and systems to guide the State Governments (first tier of regulation);
  3. To build up capacity in the system, both for regulatory as well as the developmental work, at the central level as well as at the level of the States;
  4. To establish institutional mechanisms of coordination between the Centre, the States , mineral industry, research and academic institutions, and all stake holders, so as to proactively develop solutions to the demands and problems faced by the industry;
  5. To promote research on all aspects of practical relevance to the industry and to act as a bridge between research institutions on the one hand and user industry on the other;
  6. To provide technical consultancy services;
  7. To participate in international collaborative projects in the area of regulation and development of the mineral sector;
  8. To advise Government on all matters relating to the mineral industry; and
  9. To undertake any such other activity as has become necessary in the light of developments in the field of geology, mining, mineral beneficiation and the environment

 

ORGANISATIONAL SETUP: -                                     

The IBM with its headquarters at Nagpur, has 3 Zonal offices located at Ajmer for North Zone, Bangalore for South Zone and Nagpur for Central Zone, and 12 Regional and 2 sub-regional Offices are located at Ajmer, Dehradun, Udaipur (under North Zone); Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad, Nellore (Sub-Regional Office), Margo (Goa) (under South Zone); Bhubaneswar, Kolkata, Guwahati (Sub-Regional Office), Jabalpur, Nagpur, Ranchi (under Central Zone). Apart from the Modern Mineral Processing Pilot  Plant   and   Laboratory  constructed  with  the UNDP assistance at Nagpur, two Regional  Ore  Dressing  Laboratories  and  Pilot  Plants  are  in operation at Ajmer and Bangalore. The bureau has a magnificent Headquarters Building at Nagpur and Office and Residential Complexes at Ajmer , Bangalore , Jabalpur , Margaon ( Goa ) and Udaipur .

ACTIVITIES

IBM undertakes systematic inspection of mines for enforcement of provisions of Mineral Conservation and Development Rules, 1988 (MCDR’88). The inspections and studies of mines not only enable IBM to monitor the activities of  the  mines  but also leads to on the spot discussion and consultation with the mine officials on issues of importance such as requirement of further prospecting/exploration, mine development, mineral reject utilisation, waste dumping practices, protection of environment in mines, community development,  etc.

Due to the introduction of concept of mining plan, there is lot of improvement in conservation of minerals, systematisation of mining operations and protection of environment in mining areas. This has not only compelled mine owners to pay attention to the neglected aspects of advance mine planning and due thought to mine design layout, but also provided valuable and comprehensive documentation of important mining, geological and environmental data on mine wise basis for the first time in the country. The Central Government have recently amended Mineral Concession Rules, 1960 vide notification No. GSR 329(E) dated 10.04.2003 and the Mineral Conservation and Development Rules, 1988 vide notification No. GSR 330(E) dated 10.04.2003. As per these amendments all the existing mining lessees are required to submit “Progressive Mine Closure Plan” along with prescribed financial sureties as well as “Final Mine Closure Plan” one year prior to the proposed closure of the mine. The notification also enumerates that the “Progressive Mine Closure Plan” and the “Final Mine Closure Plan” should be in the format and as per the guidelines issued by the Indian Bureau of Mines.

A new relational database system to closely monitor all the activities on conservation aspects, scientific development and environmental protection control measures in the mines, a Indo-French collaborative project on “Technical Management Information System (TMIS)” with the assistance of BRGM, France, was commenced in Nov., 1998 and successfully completed in March, 2001. Under this project 16 computer centres have been developed in different Zonal and regional offices of IBM located in 12 cities, equipped with recent generation of computer equipment. All centres are connected by local and wide area network. In all 44 IBM personnel were trained in different aspects of computer systems and software development in India as well as in BRGM, France. Experience gained in handling the latest version of the database the project has enhanced IBM’s capabilities in offering the services to develop software for other activities of IBM as well as for development of similar database for mineral rich states of the country.

Preparation of Mineral Maps and the Inventory of Mineral Resources is an important function of IBM. The National Mineral Inventory provide access to the latest information on mineral resources available for exploitation and or detailed exploration for future planning, formulation of mineral policies and augmentation of the production of mineral resources. IBM updates mineral inventory once in every five year. Presently, NMI as on 01-04-2000 for 64 minerals have been updated and updation as on 01.04.2005 have been undertaken. IBM has prepared/updated Mineral Maps of important minerals, leasehold and freehold areas along with forest overlays. These maps become useful adjuncts to the inventory of mineral resources and helpful in a better appreciation of the available resources in planning for detailed exploration. The United Nations Economic Commission along with the Council of Mining and Metallurgy Institutions have in Nov., 1999 agreed on a new classification for mineral resources, taking into account several parameters like economy, feasibility and geology. Now the entire National Mineral Inventory is being converted from the Indian system of classification of mineral resources to the United Nations Framework Classification (UNFC) System which is independent of language & differences in perception as well as understandable across the world.  The application software developed with the guidance of BRGM of France, is being utilised for implementation of UNFC to National Mineral Inventory.

IBM is a leading research centre for mineral processing in India, undertakes laboratory and pilot plant ore dressing investigations supported   by sophisticated chemical and mineralogical studies. It has a strong R&D base for providing answers to the problems of mineral processing & beneficiation and these studies are carried out on charge basis as well as on promotional basis on various low grade ores/minerals, except atomic minerals. The Modern Mineral Processing Laboratory and Pilot Plant set up at Nagpur with the assistance of UNDP is a milestone in mineral processing and ore dressing in the country, and is yet another step towards providing state-of-the-art technology to the mineral sector. With these facilities, it is capable of development of process know-how, reagent development, investigations for developing flow sheets, for possible utilisation of low grade, complex, marginal and sub-marginal resources which are the future sources of supply of minerals. It also has Environmental Analysis Laboratory for qualitative analysis of water/air and other effluents from mines and mineral based industry, which has been recognised by the Central Pollution Control Board.

Mining Research is an area where IBM has got a major role for providing the development of mining industry through optimum exploitation and resource conservation. It carries  out applied mining research on various aspects of mining with a view to help the industry  in  systematic development  of   mines, improvements   in productivity  and  to achieve  sustainable development by adopting state-of-the-art environmental management systems.  It also undertakes industry sponsored assignments on environmental and rock mechanics aspects, on charge basis. It has tuned its capabilities keeping in view the growing technological needs of the industry. A joint Indo-French collaboration project on “Development of Application Techniques in Relation to Environmental Management in Mines and Waste Recoveries” has been completed in association with BRGM, France. This project has enhanced IBM’s capabilities to assess existing potential impacts of mining operations and finding mining site-specific solutions, which commensurate with acceptable level of environmental impact and continual economic operational needs, technical, legislative and socio-economic conditions in India . It has developed state-of-the-art equipment and expertise to   take  up  any  jobs  relating  to  environment   management  in  mines, including preparation of Regional  Environmental Impact  Assessment & Management Plans, Risk Assessment & Disaster Management Plans, Environmental Auditing and Blast Vibration Studies.       

IBM provides consultancy services on attractive terms to the mining industry in surveying, exploration, geology, mining, mineral processing and environment related issues within the country and abroad. It offers consultancy services to large as well as small mine owners. The activities of this division helps the mine owners in systematic development of their mines, formulation of their production plans, better utilisation of mineral resources available in the area, to take investment decisions  for  implementation  of new projects  and  to  obtain financial   assistance  from  the  financial  institutions.   The specialised services are offered in (i) productivity study of mines (ii) techno-economic survey of mineral properties (iii) production planning and grade control on given process parameters and (iv) general consultancy for supervision and management of mining and allied work. It is well equipped with trained personnel and latest software facilities for deposit evaluation, project costing and financial analysis and for the survey works, etc.

A number of assignments have been handled by IBM and with the facilities; capabilities and expertise available can handle any type of assignment in the key areas like exploration, exploitation, beneficiation and environment within the country as well as in the international field comparable to the reputed international consultants.

IBM provides information support and advisory services to the Government and Mineral   Industry especially   on issues   like mineral policy, marketing, specifications and uses of minerals, mineral legislation, inventory of mineral resources, mining leases, and taxation, etc.  Moreover,  it  disseminates  latest  information  on  mineral industry, collected  through statutory as well as  non-statutory  sources, through its flag-ship publication `Indian Minerals Yearbook'  and number of other publications.

IBM functions as the Nation's Data Bank on Mines and Minerals. It has been recognised as one of the sub-systems of the National Information Systems of Science & Technology (NISSAT).  It is responsible for collection, compilation, analysis, interpretation and dissemination of statistical information on various economic activities on mines and minerals. It caters to the needs of the Central and State Governments, Planning Commission Central Statistical Organisation, Research   & Educational Institutions, United Nations and other foreign organisations and private agencies. For quick efficient storage and retrieval of data and information, state-of-the-art both software and hardware facilities are available at Headquarters and Regional/Zonal Offices.

Besides, IBM brings out publications of varied interest on minerals and mining technology for the benefit of the mining industry in the form of regular publications, Monographs and Bulletins. Indian Minerals Yearbook is a major publication with wide and established readership, which gives a synoptic view of the silent developments relating to a wide spectrum of events in the mineral industry in India in a year. It has a printing Press with both composing and printing units - capacity of Printing Press is 2 million page impressions per year.

IBM imparts training to its officers and staff, personnel from other organisations i.e. State Governments, Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs), Private Mines and also to Foreign Nationals from developing countries in mining, geological, mineral processing, environment and related topics. The training centre has a modern auditorium having covered area of 190 sq.m. and seating capacity of 90; equipped with latest audio-visual and public address systems.

 

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