Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar on Monday welcomed the order passed by the Supreme Court allowing miners in Goa to resume operation after 18 months.
He said detailed statement will follow after receipt and study of the order which is yet to be received by the State Government.
“Prima facie it appears that the contention of the Goa government that the mining operations should be decided by the State Government is upheld by the Supreme Court”, Mr. Parrikar said.
The Chief Minister, who is away from Goa on election campaign of the BJP, sent his reaction through State Department of Information and Publicity on Monday.
The Supreme Court on Monday lifted a 19-month-old ban on mining in Goa, which was imposed in a petition over illegal mining in the State. It was lifted on the recommendation of a panel appointed by the court to look into the mining industry and the panel suggested capping production at 20 million tonnes to protect against illegal activity.
Goa Pradesh Congress president John Fernandes welcomed the interim order of the Supreme Court and said, “We feel, mining should start immediately to mitigate the problems faced by mining dependents".
He was glad that the Court had come out with its interim order defining a buffer zone and cap for production.
Responding to the possibility that the mining industry was unhappy over the production cap, he said it is for the Goa government to join hands with industry and convince the Court to increase it to a certain extent, as the order is not final order of the Court.
He, however, hailed the Supreme Court verdict saying it will stop the unscrupulous mining which had destroyed Goa.
Goa Mineral Ore Exporters’ Association, a body representing the state’s private sector iron ore export industry, declined to comment saying they would like to get the detailed order and then respond. Industry
insiders said that the industry response was muted because they were expecting the order to also allow removal of some dumps for exports along with extraction with a cap, annually.