Govt floats fresh ‘global tender’ for Kashmir sapphire

ANIL BHAT

Jammu, Apr 10: The state government has floated a fresh global tender to tap the potential of high-grade and world-famous sapphire (mined) in Kishtwar belt of the state.
 J&K Minerals Ltd, a state government enterprise, yesterday issued a fresh global tender inviting parties with expertise in mine-planning, exploration and mining of gemstones to undertake exploration and exploitation of sapphire through a joint venture.
 Remotely hidden in the lap of the snow-capped Himalayas in the scenic Paddar valley, the sapphire mine here is the highest mine in the world producing these exquisite gems.
 Kashmir sapphires are renowned for their unmatched clarity and transparency and mainly used in jewellery and the beauty and depth of intense, velvet blue colour of the gemstones are second to none in the gem world. The colour resembles the stunning hue of the peacock's neck.
 The price of pure sapphire can easily cross USD 100,000 for a carat, making it the most expensive in its category.
 The new tender was floated in a bid to woo international and national players interested in the extraction of sapphire because the previous offer inviting Expression of Interest (EoI) failed to generate much response.
 Minister for Industries Sajjad Ahmed Kichloo told PTI that only one "major" company had submitted the proposal for extraction of sapphire. "We do not want to give the contract this way".
 JKML holds a mine lease over an area of 6.65 square km on GT Sheet 52/C at Paddar, at a height of 4,327 metres.

Lastupdate on : Wed, 10 Apr 2013 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Wed, 10 Apr 2013 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Thu, 11 Apr 2013 00:00:00 IST




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