It has been a little over a year since Balwant Singh took over as the Managing Director of the state-run Odisha Mining Corporation (OMC). Singh, who did a phenomenal job as the Puri collector, elevated hopes when he took over the mantle of OMC. And what a disruptive transformation he is weaving!
If OMC is rolling on the high growth trajectory today, it can largely be attributed to the stewardship and vision of Mr. Singh. He has unleashed a string of reforms that have changed the mining paradigm at OMC’s leases. Besides optimizing mining by selecting the right workforce and deploying cutting-edge technologies, Singh is leading OMC to the shores of sustainable mining. A mining ecosystem wherein all stakeholders- state or non-state actors can thrive and grow in unison.
Singh, a diligent and honest mandarin, has taken painstaking efforts to turn around OMC into a global mining company. Recognizing the role of technology to ramp up productivity and shrink turnaround time, Singh has deployed cutting-edge technologies at the Baliparbat stockyard under the leasehold of OMC’s flagship iron ore mines operations. Aligning with the state government’s 5T vision statement, Odisha Mining Corporation (OMC) has reinvented its mineral evacuation from its stockyard through the IT solution Stockyard Management System (SMS).
SMS is a pioneering initiative that prunes turnaround time (TAT) and enhances ore dispatch efficiency of the weighbridge by 30 percent. The system takes transparency and efficiency to the next level with a touch of niche technologies like the Internet of Things (IoT) and automation of ore dispatch process through Robotic Process Automation (RPA).
Singh has unveiled a ‘customer interface’ portal, carrying forward his thrust on technology. Titled ‘Customer Integrated Management Services (CIMS)’, the portal is loaded with all relevant information for OMC’s customers, such as status of the contract, sales orders, delivery orders, daily despatch details, EMD, account balance, customer ledger. Besides enabling the customers to access instant information, the CIMS application ensures seamless communication between suppliers and buyers on the status of contracts, payments, sale orders, and delivery orders.
The CIMS application is also envisaged to be integrated with the existing ERP system (SAP) of OMC and i3MS systems of the Steel & Mines Department, Government of Odisha, and the e-auction portal of MSTC Ltd facilitate data sharing and reporting.
Inputting two mines recently allocated into production by the Ministry of Mines, the OMC led by Singh made a record of sorts.
Following a request by the State government to ease the iron ore shortage in Odisha, two mines, Jiling-Langalota and Guali, in Keonjhar district, were assigned to the State PSU within a short period of 25 days. After Jindal Steel and Power (Guali) and Shyam Ores Jharkhand Pvt Ltd (Jilling-Langalota) failed to execute the lease deed, the two operating mines were assigned to OMC.
Knowing the impact of the virulent pandemic, Singh led from the front to galvanize Covid vaccination among its workforce. The vaccination drive kicked off at Barbil in the presence of the Chairman, Managing Director, functional directors, regional managers, mines managers, and other senior officials of OMC. The mining PSU is wholly committed to the health and welfare of all its employees. The vaccination drive covered all the mining areas of OMC in Gandhamardan, South Kaliapani, Bangur, JK Road, Rayagada, Koira, and Angul regions besides the head office at Bhubaneswar.
OMC has hit the purple patch in terms of financial performance, buoyed by solid output and bottom-line. To support the state during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Odisha Mining Corporation contributed an amount of Rs 500 crore to the Odisha Chief Minister’s Relief Fund in 2021. OMC made a growth of 5.42 percent during the last financial year despite the pandemic. The total mineral production the previous year was 17.12 million tons. In the previous Financial Year, OMC achieved a sales revenue of Rs 5,592 crore, 36.60 percent higher than the last year. OMC aims to reach 1 billion dollars in revenue in the near term.
Apart from a strong focus on operational performance, OMC is setting the right benchmarks for sourcing the workforce. Over the past few months, Singh has rejuvenated the corporation’s human resource mix by consistently hiring across categories- technical and non-technical.
Overall, OMC has gone many notches higher on the sustainability index by deftly juggling high growth performance with the environment and community protection. It has evolved into a safe and sustainable mining metaphor with high stakes on customers and the environment. For OMC, profit counts but what counts many times over are the people and the planet that have sustained its operations.
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