Updated: March 26, 2012 15:43 IST

Goa govt. set to launch major crackdown on illegal mining

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Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar. Photo: Shanker Chakravarty
Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar. Photo: Shanker Chakravarty

Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar today announced that a major crackdown will be launched on mining traders who were fuelling illegal activities in the State.

Mr. Parrikar said all those involved in illegal mining industry would be jailed.

“Not a single licence of mining traders would be renewed during the forthcoming financial year,” said the Chief Minister, who also holds mining portfolio.

He said that each licence of the trader would be studied on case-to-case basis.

Responding to the motion moved by Leader of Opposition Pratapsingh Rane, Mr. Parrikar admitted severe mess in the State mines and geology department, which was helping the traders working illegally in the State.

“Before March 31, I am going to make changes in the mining department,” he announced.

The Chief Minister pointed out that the traders were registered even when election code of conduct was in session.

Goa has been facing an onslaught of illegal mining which is being investigated by Centre-appointed Justice M. B. Shah commission.

The illegal mining industry in Goa is estimated to be between Rs.1,200-10,000 crore.

It is necessary to publish a white paper on the activities of mining companies and their exports during the last decade. The problem started when China started importing low grade Goan iron ore, during the period 2002-08 when China was in a great hurry to complete many projects, before commencement of the Olympic games in 2008. The extent of damage caused to the ecology of Goa on account of illegal mining activities undertaken during that period needs to be carefully examined. One wishes that the new BJP government takes all those steps which would take care of the environment as also of people whose lives depend on mining activities.

from:  Narendra M Apte
Posted on: Mar 26, 2012 at 16:23 IST
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