Deccan Gold Mines digs for signs of sparkle

Times News Network, Economic Times, 3 March 2004 :

BANGALORE : The Deccan Gold Mines, the country’s only listed gold exploration company, is expected to commence feasibility studies at the Dharwad-Shimoga region.

Sandeep Lakhwara, director of DGM told ET that preliminary studies had indicated that there were reserves to the tune of seven tonne up to a depth of 50 metres. He said that a decision on the route of raising further finance will be taken once the feasibility studies are completed.

“Typically in Australia , the average cost of operating an open pit mine would be around $160 per tonne while for underground mines this is around $250 per tonne,” he said.

The Dharwad-Shimoga region is also reported to have good reserves of platinum ore (with ore grade of about three gm per tonne). Besides focusing on Karnataka, DGM is also eyeing mining opportunities in other parts of the country including Maharashtra , Madhya Pradesh and Andhra Pradesh.

Besides the Dharwad-Shimoga region, DGM is also exploring for the yellow metal in the Ramagiri region which falls within the south Yepamma gold mine and was being operated by Bharat Gold Mines.

It has also evinced interest in exploring in north and south Hutti region and Mangalur in Karnataka to tap the gold mining potential. Mr Lakhwara said that the company’s exploratory activities in Maharashtra had showed potential of mining close to 8.3m tonne of zinc.

The region where this has been discovered is reported to contain ore body with 6.8% zinc content (considered to be of medium to high levels of ore content).

Similan Madhyy the rlblock iSidhi a Pradesh had yielded good potential for mining high-quality nickel, while the Pathalgaon region had shown potential for diamonds. DGM has also expanded its board by inducting VK Gaur (former Union secretary at the Department of Ocean Development), M Ramakrishnan (the former senior deputy-director general with the Geological Survey of India) and KR Krishnamurthi (the former general manager of the Chitradurga Copper Mines).