INDIAN IRON AND STEEL
The Indian Iron &
Steel Company Ltd. (IISCO) has been the forerunner of the country's
gigantic iron and steel industry. Over the years, this Company
had undergone many a change, merger and expansion in activities.
The history of this company is the history of development of iron
& steel industry in this country.
- Way back in 1870 a small plant
was founded in the jungles of Kulti to make iron. Starting off
as Bengal Iron Works Company, it became Burrakar Iron Works
in 1881 and was renamed as Bengal Iron and Steel Company in
1890. Later in 1926 the company again changed its name to Bengal
Iron Company Ltd. IISCO set up an iron making plant at Burnpur
and Bengal Iron Company was merged with IISCO in 1936. In 1939
Steel Corporation of Bengal started producing steel at their
plant at Burnpur which was amalgamated with IISCO in 1953.
- The integrated steel plant IISCO's
Burnpur Steel Plant is about 200 km. from Kolkata and is about
10 km. from Asansol Railway Station on the main Howrah Delhi
railway line. Started in 1918 as an iron-making unit, steel-making
facilities were added in 1939 and the plant was expanded to
produce a million tonnes of ingot steel in the late fifties.
It has produced over 25 million tonnes of steel till now.
- IISCO has produced pipes sufficient
to girdle the globe thrice. Nearly two-thirds of spun pipes
required in the country was produced in its Kulti and Ujjain
spun pipe plants, having annual capacity of 166,000 tonnes and
60,000 tonnes respectively. Kulti also has a large Foundry Complex
with annual capacity of 63,000 tonnes. Kulti plant pioneered
the manufacture of spun pipes in 1945. The spun pipe plant Ujjain
in Madhya Pradesh was set up in 1964.
- IISCO has its own captive collieries
at Chasnalla and Jitpur for supply of metallurgical coke. IISCO's
third captive colliery at Ramnagore is around 10 km from Kulti
and supplies non-cooking coal to Burnpur. Chasnalla has a pithead
Coal Washery and is connected with Burnpur by a 54 km. aerial
rope-way. IISCO has its captive mines at Gua and Chiria. Gua
is a mechanised mine with reserves of about 250 million tonnes
of iron ore and Chiria has a huge deposit of 1970 million tonnes.
- The first Blast Furnaces of IISCO
went into production in 1922-24. The steel making facilities,
with an annual capacity of 250,000 tonnes went into stream in
1939. A capacity of 100,000 tonnes was added during the war
- Immediately after the absorption
of Steel Corporation of Bengal in 1953, IISCO launched its first
expansion programme for Burnpur Works called '1953 Extension'
to increase its output of saleable steel to 700,000 tonnes.
When IISCO improved its operative efficiency and achieved output
beyond its rated capacity another extension programme was launched
- With deterioration in raw materials
and aging of equipment, the productivity of the plant started
declining steadily from 1967-68. The company was taken over
by the Government in 1972. The century old foundry at Kulti
was modernised to produce high value SG iron and alloy iron
- Over a century of experience in
the operation, an industrial and mining complex has been created
which represents valuable skills, a strong sense of attachment
and a tradition of dedication. IISCO is a collective of around
40,000 dedicated people working in the plants, collieries, ore
mines and offices.
- Following the enactment of the
Public Sector Industries and Restructuring Act in 1978, the
Government and the Financial Institutions having transferred
all the Shares of the Company to the Steel Authority of India
Ltd; IISCO became a wholly owned subsidiary of SAIL from March,