Hindustan Copper Limited

(A PANORAMIC VIEW OF PLANTS IN KHETRI COPPER COMPLEX)

1. INTRODUCTION

1.1 Hindustan Copper Limited (HCL) was incorporated on 9th November, 1967, under the Companies Act, 1956. It was established as a Govt. of India Enterprise to take over, from National Mineral Development Corpn. Ltd., all plants, projects, schemes and studies pertaining to the exploration and exploitation of copper deposits, including smelting and refining, for fulfilling long term objectives of the nation, viz. development and growth of copper mining industry on sound lines and to maximise indigenous production of copper metal. This is to be achieved by developing new copper deposits, known or to be discovered, by adopting appropriate and modern technologies.

1.2 The Government of India nationalised the only copper producing company, Indian Copper Corporation Ltd. at Ghatsila in Bihar in March 1972 and handed over its management and ownership to HCL.

1.3 In November, 1982, the prestigious Malanjkhand Copper Project comprising of a large and fully mechanised open pit mine and concentrator plant was dedicated to the nation.

1.4 The Continuous cast Copper Rod Plant at Taloja Copper Project of Hindustan Copper Ltd. was commissioned in December, 1989 with an installed capacity of 60,000 T. The company has selected Southwire SCR-2000 technology using natural gas as fuel.

Mines

(Location of Mines)

Ore Capacity
Khetri Copper Complex, Rajasthan 19.50 lakh tonnes per annum
Indian Copper Complex Bihar 12.60 " " " "
Malanjkhand Copper Project. 20.00 " " " "
Madhya Pradesh  
SMELTERS

(Location of Smelters)

Metal Capacity (TPA)
Khetri Copper Complex, Rajasthan 31000 tonnes per annum
Indian Copper Complex, Bihar 16500 tonnes per annum

2. PHYSICAL PERFORMANCE

2.1 The production of ore, metal in concentrates, refined copper (cathode) and wire rod during the year 1996-97 and 1997-98 are given below:

(Figures in tonnes)

Product 1994-95 Actuals 1995-96 Actuals 1996-97 Actuals Target for 1997-98 1997-98 Actuals  
Ore Production 4706 4690 3893 4290 4496 ('000 tonnes)
Metal in 45976 46563 37271 41000 41440 concentrates (T)
Refined Copper 46134 41153 38481 45000 42375 (Cathode) (T)
Wirerod 32426 37280 41332 42000 31484 (Taloja) (T)

3. FINANCIAL PERFORMANCE

Operating Results : (Rs. in crores)

Details Actuals for the previous three year Annual budget Estimate 1997-98(Prov.) Actuals for 1997-98(Prov.)
  94-95 95-96 96-97    
Income 944.37 1133.68 1001.05 850.72 803.55
Operating cost 782.86 963.03 1037.16 536.50 852.64
Interest and transaction 37.01 39.66 40.67 50.17 57.45
Depreciation and amortisation 52.25 55.15 53.84 63.00 63.45
Net profit before income tax and dividend 72.26 75.84 (130.62) (97.95) (168.99)

4. SALES PERFORMANCE

4.1 The Company achieved a total sale of 68,212 tonnes during the year 1996-97. The company achieved a total sale of 57857 tonnes of copper during the year 1997-98.

5. EXPANSION & DIVERSIFICATION

5.1 Expansion of Khetri Smelter and Refinery to 100,000 tpa This project is one of the main features of the restructuring plan of HCL which would make HCL's operation viable in the competitive environment, M/s MESCO, Japan prepared basic engineering for the project. For Refinery expansion the latest State of the art ISA Technology would be followed. Pre-PIB approval has been accorded on 20.08.1996. HCL has submitted its proposal for Stage-II approval of the project by PIB/CCEA.

5.2 Meanwhile tender enquiries for procurement actions have already been issued and offers of around 32 packages out of total 35 packages have been received so far which are at various stages of evaluation.

5.3 Under uniguage programme of Railways, gauge conversion of Kandla, Palanpur section is to be expedited by Railways alongwith Phulera Dabla-Rewari Section. In the tripartite meeting held on 06.08.96 which was represented by Department of Mines, HCL and Railways it was decided that the survey work for Phulera-Ringus-Rewari and Dabla-Singhana will be completed in November, 1996 which has not been completed so far.

6. Energy conservation

6.1 HCL has been giving high priority to conservation of energy at different stages of its operations in various Units and those are closely being monitored. The improvement achieved in this area in the past has been maintained in the current year also.

7. COMPUTERISATION

7.1 There has been further progress in computerisation in HCL during the current year 1997-98. Most of the system development work started in the year 1996-97, has been completed. The computer resources have also been augmented in the units and offices mainly to replace the old PCs with the advanced type to take care of the increasing work load and new jobs.

7.2 The computerisation efforts has been strengthened by further decentralizing the specialized technical work as well as commercial and accounting based work. Some integrated system design and development is being carried out by systems Dept.. with the idea of standardization among the offices.

7.3 A computerized Marketing Management system for Company's Marketing Division has been developed in a Client/Server environment which is being implemented at Head Office and subsequently will be implemented for standardization in all the Sales Offices throughout India.

8. POLLUTION CONTROL AND ENVIRONMENT MANAGEMENT EFFORTS

8.1 The following gaseous pollution control projects have been virtually completed in KCC and ICC.

  1. Double hood System of converter
  2. Gas Cleaning plant.
  3. Sulphuric Acid Plant.
  4. Alkali Scrubbing Plant.

8.2 For Solid effluents also tailing dams and lagoons were constructed in various units of HCL. The capacity of the tailing dams is being increased progressively using the latest technology available for this purpose. Water recycling system from tailing ponds/lagoons are also working satisfactorily.

9. SALIENT ASPECTS OF THE WORK BEING DONE BY ADVISORY BOARDS/COUNCILS

9.1 Well established system of employee's participation in management in the units as well as at corporate level are functioning. Shop Councils in each shop and joint councils at unit levels besides bipartite committees on Safety, Canteen Grievance Handling, House Allotment and Housekeeping are in existence and functioning properly. These Committees are attended by Senior Executives and Union leaders and they discuss issues on production, productivity, welfare training and other allied matters of industrial value. Meetings are held at regular intervals - every month and every three months and of other committees quite often as the case may be.

9.2 At the corporate level, there are two apex committees. These are National Joint Committee for Copper (NJCC) which deals with welfare, medical and social facilities, wages and services conditions etc. of workers for the company as a whole on a national level and meet at regular intervals. The other is Joint Consultative committee (JCC) which meets once in a quarter to discuss the issues on production and productivity, cost control, yields, safety, pollution control measures etc. These are attended by Chairman-cum-Managing Director, Directors and all the unit Heads, Personnel Heads from the management side and very senior leaders from the workmen side.

10. RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT ACTIVITIES

10.1 Mining Operation

Geology dept. of MCP has initiated "Preliminary Geological exploration" work around the southern side of Malanjkhand. The Company has also applied for prospecting licence in this location for an area of about 45 Sq.Km.

10.2 METALLURGICAL OPERATIONS

Purification of Palladium:

The process of purification of Palladium has been standardised at Indian Copper Complex. Action has also been initiated to set up installation for plant scale operation.

10.3 Electrowinning of Nickel

Process flow sheet has been developed at Indian copper complex to recover through electrowinning, Nickel from anode slag leach residue and spent mother liquor of Nickel Sulphate Plant. Experiments are under progress to remove impurities like Copper, Iron, Cobalt etc. from solution before electrowinning. M/s Mecon, Ranchi, has been appointed as a consultant for preparation of basic engineering and feasibility report for a plant scale installation.

10.4 Utilisation of Black Acid

Black acid generated in the Khetri Copper Complex Copper electro refining plant is enriched with micro nutrients that are essential for agricultural purpose. Experiments are being carried out at the Unit to establish standardised process parameters for utilising this acid in production of single super phosphate fertilizer fortified with micro nutrients.

11. INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS

11.1 Permission of the Ministry of Labour Govt. of India to close down Mosaboni Mines (including Badia) with effect from 01.12.1997 on an application made by the Company to them dated 09.07.1997 was communicated to the Company vide Ministry of Labour's Notification No. 43024/5/97-IR(MISC) dated 1.10.1997 with copies to the operating trade unions at Mosaboni. The Industrial relations situation at Mosaboni, thereafter, became very volatile with lot of demonstrations, gate meetings and slogan shoutings against the management. A joint Action committee namely 'Khan Bachao Sangharsh Samity', formed by the operating unions/political parties, had detailed discussions with the management at Head Office on 18th and 25th October, 1997. However, members of the Samity were not satisfied. In order to give better terms of separation, as compared to closure compensation, the Company introduced the Voluntary Retirement Scheme (VRS) only for Indian Copper Complex including Rakha Copper Project from 12.11.1997 upto 28.11.1997. In response to the Circular, applications from 1394 workmen for voluntary retirement were received and their request was accepted. They have been released from the services and an amount of Rs. 47 crores (approx. ) has been paid to them towards VR compensation, gratuity, terminal leave benefits etc. 41 officers were also released under the VR Scheme.

11.2 On persistent demand, the VR Scheme was again been introduced for a period from 15.12.97 to 15.01.1998. 7 officers & 39 workmen were separated under this scheme, who opted for VR.

11.3 Notwithstanding the above situation, the unrecognised factions of the Mosaboni Mines Labour Union (recognised) filed a Writ Petition in the Hon'ble High Court, Patna, Ranchi Bench praying for stay on the closure. The single Bench Judge of the Hon'ble High Court passed an order on 17.11.1997 for maintaining status quo in the matter of closure of Mosaboni Mine (including Badia). Subsequently, the Hon'ble High Court passed an Order on 2nd December, 1997 directing that the Writ Petition filed by the respondent i.e. the Company for vacating the Order of status quo dated 17.11.97 be placed before the Division Bench for further consideration. Accordingly, the matter was taken up on 17,12,97 by the Division Bench of Hon'ble High Court of Patna, Ranchi Bench, in which the Court modified the earlier judgement of status Quo making it clear that the Order of the Court should not be construed to mean that the closure of mines is stayed. The Court also clarified that whatever other relief has been sought for in the Writ Petition by the Petitioners will be considered by this Bench on 06.01.1998.

11.4 Similarly, Copper Mazdoor Union of Mosaboni Mines (SUCI) filed another writ petition on the same ground in the Hon'ble High Court at Calcutta praying that their application for review of the permission granted by the Ministry of Labour, Govt. of India is still pending with the Central Labour Ministry and that the Government has not applied their mind on the genuineness and adequacy of the reasons for closing down the mines and, therefore, permission granted to close down the mines should be stayed.

11.5 The Hon'ble Calcutta High Court while disposing of the writ petition on 1.12.97 directed the Ministry of Labour, Govt. of India to dispose of the review petition filed by the Workers' Union and pending with them within three months after considering the genuineness of the reasons submitted by HCL in support of the closure and after giving opportunity to the parties to represent their case. The Court further directed that till that time the Order of Closure shall remain stayed. The management has filed a Memorandum of Appeal against the above Order and also a Stay Petition before the Division Bench of Hon'ble Calcutta High Court. The Division Bench of Hon'ble Calcutta High Court had listed the matter for hearing. The Hon'ble Calcutta High Court has vacated stay on 10.02.1998 with permission to the opposite party for filing SLP to the Hon'ble Supreme Court within 10 days of the Judgement. The SLP so filed was dismissed by the Hon'ble Supreme Court at the admission stage itself during March, 1998.

12. PERSPECTIVE PLAN FOR WOMEN WELFARE

i) Implementation of Equal Remuneration Act

In Hindustan Copper Limited, no discrimination is made with regard to sex, caste, creed between male and female employees. Persons doing similar nature of job get equal remuneration.

ii) Equality of opportunity in employment and recognition of the right to work as a fundamental right guaranteed by the constitution.

As per Mines Act, 1952, employment of women in underground is prohibited, In other areas, employment to women is provided. In Hindustan Copper Limited equal opportunity is provided and no discrimination is made between male and female employees. In promotion no discrimination is made and women are considered as per subject to recruitment and promotion rules of the Company.

iii) Application of Maternity Act to Women.

Provision of Maternity Benefit Act are strictly followed in Hindustan Copper Limited.

iv) Training facilities at the place of work on New Machinery.

Wherever new machineries like electronic typewriters are introduced women employees are provided with necessary training to equip them to operate the machines.

v) In Company Training Programme.

Women employees attend various in-company training programmes like adult education workers development seminars and general development programmes organised periodically at unit training centres. Women employees were also given in-service training.

vi) Creche facilities.

Creche facilities are provided to the working women at the project.

13. WELFARE OF TRIBALS AND MINORITIES

13.1 The main welfare activities in respect of tribal and Minorities are the part of 20 point programme of the company. The following activities are undertaken during the period April 1997 to March 98.

i) Clean Drinking Water

Repair of existing tubewells at different projects and construction of Bandh at KCC 900 persons were benefitted.

ii) Health of All

Regular multi-diagnostic camp at surrounding villages of ICC, MCC & KCC. 1915 children were immunised and 3234 person are medically checked up.

iii) Expansion of Education

More than 8 adult education centres run by company through Mahila Samaj. Relevant Stationery and books are distributed to the participant free of cost 199 persons were benefitted.

14. EMPLOYMENT IN THE COMPANY OF SC/ST/EX-SM/PH/ LDP MINORITIES AS ON 31.03.98.

Group Total No. of Employees SC ST Ex-service men Ph LDP Minorities
Executives 1967 173 51 22 6 - 122
Non-Executives 16433 2379 2916 727 126 1288 1086

Trainees:

  1. Trade Apprentices - 278
  2. Graduate Engineer - 65
  3. Management Trainee - 5

15. Mou ratings

15.1 The MoU ratings achieved by the Company during the last three years is given below :

Year Rating
1994-95 Excellent
1995-96 Very Good
1996-97 Fair

16. PROGRESSIVE USE OF HINDI IN OFFICIAL WORK

16.1 HCL continued its concerted efforts during the year to increase use of Hindi in its offices as per annual targets fixed by Government of India. Effective steps were taken to motivate employees to exercise their knowledge of Hindi in their day-to-day official work. Special attention was given on Hindi work-shops. Workshop material was updated. An attractive brochure containing the list of common Hindi-English notes was published and circulated widely. On the occasion of 50th year of our independence, a special message from CMD was issued in tricolour on Hindi Diwas. the 14th September, 1997. During the year, three manuals were translated by Central Translation Bureau, New Delhi and necessary actions have been taken to print them in bilingual form.

16.2 The third Sub-Committee of the Parliamentary Committee on Official Language visited Company's Head Office at Calcutta on 20.08.97 and expressed satisfaction on Company's efforts. The House Journal of the Company was remodelled on the suggestions of honourable members of the Committee.

16.3 HCL took active part in celebrating the birth centenary of Hindi poet Nirala under the aegis of Town Official Language Implementation Committee, Calcutta. The Committee published a periodical 'Abhivyakti' in Hindi with the help of HCL.

16.4 The Official Language Implementation Committee chaired by CMD at Head Office and Heads at Units reviewed regularly progress made in Hindi. Intensive training was imparted to the employees for operating PCs in Hindi during the year. Monitoring of the implementation of the Government's Official Language Policy was strengthened and check points were made effective to ensure compliance of the Official Language Act. HCL received an appreciation letter from CALTOLIC for the best compliance of the annual programme of Government of India.