Justice M.B. Shah, heading the Central government-appointed inquiry Commission on mining, on Friday began inspection of several controversial mines, to ascertain the ground realities of illegal iron ore mining in the coastal state.
Mr. Shah arrived in Goa on Thursday evening and got on to his job since morning. He summoned district collectors and senior police officers for a meeting at Raj Bhavan, where he is reportedly put up, officials said.
A senior mines department officer said due to paucity of time, Mr. Shah is likely to only inspect couple of mines as against his earlier plan to visit eight mines.
Dr. U.V. Singh, a member of the Commission, has been camping in Goa since Sunday and eight teams constituted under him have already began inspecting various mines.
A government spokesman said Mr. Shah would be meeting members of public on September 17 at the Secretariat to get feedback on the mining activities.
Mr. Singh said the Commission will inspect all the 90 active mining leases and even those mining sites which are reported to be dormant.
The Commission during their probe will pin-point the irregularities including evasion of mining royalty, illegal extraction of ore and encroachment by mining firms outside their lease areas.
The Commission, which has been appointed by the Central government to probe illegal mining across the country, under the Commission of Inquiry Act, last year has been given a period of 18 months to submit the report.
Mr. Singh said the Commission will probe irregularities in mining sector but special consideration would be given to events after China boom, when Iron ore became in great demand due to infrastructure to have Olympics in that country.
Goa is the largest exporter of Iron Ore in the country with exports of 54 million metric tonnes annually.