Business Newsweek, 8-14 March 2004 :
Deccan Gold Mines (DGML) announced that it has identified 15 prospects in the Dharwar Shimoga RP block containing gold mineralization.
The prospective areas identified by DGML’s geologists are: the North and South Hutti prospects, the Ramagiri blocks, Mangalore RP block and the Dharwar Shimoga RP blocks. Other than the Ramagiri Goldfields, which is locate din Andhra Pradesh, all of its prospects are in Karnataka.
Speaking to newspersons here, DGML director Sandeep Lakhwara said, “Dharwar Shimoga RP blocks offer the potential for open pittable mining operations.”
Open pit mines, because of their lower cost, offer opportunities to process lower grades of ore, he said.
Further, he continued, an average grade of between 2-3 grams per tonne would be feasible to mine in an open pit operation whereas grades of above 6 grams per tonne would be required for underground mining operations.
Mr Lakhwara also said a common feature of all the prospects identified by DGML – other than the Dharwar Shimoga RP Blocks – is that they are located adjacent to the gold mining centres.
DGML’s chief geologist and director, Dr. VN Vasudev said the company plans to undertake drilling operations in this area within the next two weeks to substantiate the surface sampling and trenching results.
“Preliminary survey by geologists in the area have indicated yield to be order of 16 grams per tonne,” he said.
Explaining further, Dr Vasudev said DGML’s North Hutti prospects, located adjacent to world class Hutti gold deposit features extensions of gold reefs currently being mined by the Hutti Gold Mines Ltd.
exploration efforts in the North Hutti prospects to date have yielded encouraging results, while intensive drilling is proposed in the area leading to feasibility studies to potentially define the quantum of gold contained in the reefs, Dr Vasudev observed.
The Hutti Gold Mines Ltd has produced about 50 tonnes of gold to date while the South Hutti prospect features the Maski Gold Fields.
Exploration by DGML geologists, according to Dr Vasudev, has revealed significant and high grades encouraging detailed exploration to be taken up.
In keeping with the philosophy of DGML to invite Indian participation in the activities, about 10 per cent of the rights entitlements of the promoters were renounced to the Indian public recently. It raised an amount of Rs 5 crore which will essentially be utilised to undertake detailed exploration on advanced stage prospects being acquired by the company.