The Pradhan Mantri Khanij Kshetra Kalyan Yojana was launched on 17th September 2015 for the welfare of the people and areas affected by mining operations. Funds for this scheme are generated by District Mineral Foundations (DMFs). And most of these areas are occupied and inhabited by the scheduled tribes. In all the districts that are affected by the mining, District Mineral Foundations (DMFs) under the Mines and Minerals (Development & Regulation) Amendment Act, 2015, the Central Government has fixed rates payable by miners to the District Mineral Foundations. An amount of 30% of royalty has to be paid by the miner if the lease executed dates before 12th January 2015 and for the mining leases after 12th January 2015, it is 10% of the royalty payable. These Mines and Minerals (Development & Regulation) (MMDR) funds are then used for the implementation of the Pradhan Mantri Khanij Kshetra Kalyan Yojana. The directly and indirectly affected people (as specified by the government) by such mining or excavation activities should be covered under this scheme. The list of such directly and indirectly affected people and local communities should be maintained and updated by the District Mineral Foundations (DMFs). People having legal or traditional rights over the land on which mining, excavation, or any such activity is performed come under the list of affected people or traditional communities. The families which get displaced because of these mining activities need to be rehabilitated by the authorities. At least 60% of MMDR funds are required to be utilized in the following ‘High Priority Areas’:
• Health Care – Implementation of Group Insurance Scheme for the mining-affected people should be taken care of. Primary or secondary health facilities should be provided in consideration to the existing available health facilities of the central government, state, or any local bodies to the people of the mining-affected areas. While preparing for such infrastructure the knowledge available with the ‘National Institute of Miner’s Health’ should be included for taking care of diseases and illnesses related to mining.
• Drinking Water – Water purification facilities, drinking water facilities, and water connection pipes should be taken care of.
• Education – Construction of school buildings, hostels for students as well as teachers in remote areas, classrooms, labs, toilets, transportation facilities, and such more education-related resources should be considered.
• Sanitation – Proper collection and disposal of mining waste and fecal sludge, cleaning of public places, and construction of toilets.
• Development of Women and Children – Special programs can be carried out for spreading awareness for maternity-related issues, infections, malnutrition, and child health issues.
• Skill Development – Developing skills of the willing and deserving local people by setting up centers, providing training, and to the Self-Help Groups (SHGs) for generation of economic activities among the backward.
• Safeguard of Old and Disabled – Organizing programs for the welfare of the old and people with disabilities.
• Pollution Control and Environment Preservation – Opting for environment-friendly and sustainable mining techniques, prevention of lakes, ponds, groundwater, and other water resources, prevention of air pollution due to mining, and proper drainage system for mining dump.
Utilization of up to 40% MMDR funds in the following ‘Other Priority Areas’:
• Irrigation – Opting for sustainable and advanced irrigation techniques.
• Watershed and Energy – Establishing rainwater harvesting systems and alternative sources of energy.
• Infrastructure – Developing required infrastructure such as – roads, railways, and water projects.
• And more such measures for sustainable resources and improved environmental conditions in mining districts.
The vulnerable and marginalized communities such as the tribal are empowered through this scheme. It is said, annually Rs 6000 crore is utilized for the development of people and areas affected by mining activities. According to the reports of the ministry, till now an amount of Rs 22,999 crore has been approved out of which an amount of Rs 6,944 has been utilized.