The present problem has its roots in 2009, when CIL decided not to sign fuel supply agreements for emerging power projects due to limited coal output. When the government put pressure, it began supplying coal to meet half the demand of those projects for which letters of assurance had already been signed.
As of today, 24 thermal plants in the country have less than four days of coal supply. Eight thermal plants have coal stock of less than a week - and the reason for this is lack of supply from CIL and its subsidiaries.
CIL, on its part, has partially blamed the Railways for being a coal guzzler for its thermal power project in north India. CIL also claims that it provides at least 75 per cent of coal availability to all power stations in the northern region.
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