(EnergyAsia, May 4 2012, Friday) — Coal India Limited, one of the world’s largest coal mining companies, has appointed S. Narsing Rao as chairman from last month.

Mr Rao, previously chairman of Singareni Collieries Company Limited (SCCL) in Andhra Pradesh state, succeeded Zohra Chatterji, who had held the post in addition to her position as Secretary to the Ministry of Coal.

Trained in economics and chemistry, Mr Rao is taking on a new job at a time when Coal India is facing growing criticism for failing to raise production to meet the country’s rising coal demand.

Mr Rao, who has vowed to boost the state-owned company’s domestic coal production and imports, won acclaim for raising SCCL’s coal production from 36 million tonnes in 2006 to 53 million tonnes last year.