Centre to resume gold ore extraction at KGF
The Centre has decided to revive Bharat Gold Mines Ltd. (BGML) and restart operations for extraction of gold ore at Kolar Gold Fields (KGF), where BGML used to extract gold before it was closed in 2001.
- BGML, which was in profit, had celebrated its centenary year in 1980 but subsequently had incurred losses finally leading to its closure on February 28, 2001.
- The Centre’s decision was in accordance with its attempts to reduce dependency on gold import and explore the possibility of reviving existing gold mines.
Kolar Gold Fields
- Kolar Gold Fields (K.G.F.) is a mining region in Kolar district, Karnataka, India.
- The Western Gangas founded Kolar in the second century CE.
- The Western Gangas made Kolar their capital and ruled Mysore, Coimbatore, Salem and Trave.
- It is headquartered in Robertsonpet, where employees of Bharat Gold Mines Limited (BGML) and BEML Limited (formerly Bharat Earth Movers Limited) and their families live.
- For over a century, the town has been known for gold mining. The mine closed on 28 February 2001 due to a fall in gold prices, despite gold still being present.
- One of India's first power-generation units was built in 1889 to support mining operations.
- The mine complex hosted some particle physics experiments between the 1960s and 1992.
- The Kolar gold mines were nationalized in 1956, and provided a total of over 900 tonnes of gold.
- They were closed by the Indian government on 28 February 2001 for environmental and economic reasons; food, water and shelter were scarce, and production did not justify the investment.
- The pyroclastic and pillow lava at Kolar Gold Fields have been declared a National Geological Monument by the Geological Survey of India (GSI) for their protection, maintenance, and encouragement of geotourism.