Caurem villagers arrested for stopping ore transportation by outsider

GOANEWS DESK, PANAJI | 21 March 2016 14:14 IST

During festive season of Shigmo, Caurem village of Quepem taluka has started burning once again with police arresting eight villagers for stopping transport of e-auctioned iron ore.

The mining lease belongs to Fomento, from where the government had e-auctioned the ore which was extracted illegally.

The Caurem villagers are demanding that the transportation work of the e-auctioned iron ore be given to the trucks owned by the villagers.

The police however moved into action with transport contractor Santosh Gaonkar making a verbal complain of stopping his trucks.

Ravindra Velip, the local leader, alleged that the mining firm does not want to give transportation contract to locals because the actual ore lying at the lease property is more than double of what is shown on papers.

“We had asked for a proper inventory of the ore lying at the lease, which the department has not agreed to”, Velip told goanews.com.

Eight youth from the village are arrested for unlawful assembly, wrongful restrain and restraining the transport of e-auctioned iron ore.

“All the offences are bailable and they would be released once the bond and surety is produced”, Quepem PI Pravin Gawas told goanews.com.

Transportation of the e-auctioned ore started today while most of the villagers had moved to neighbouring villagers to play Shigmo from house to house.

According to Velip, the transport has started while the administrative tribunal is supposed to dispose of their case as per the high court order.

The villagers have formed a multipurpose co-operative society to carry out mining related activities in an organised manner.

However, the local assistant registrar of co-operative societies refused to register it, due to which they had to run from pillar to post and up to the high court to get the society registered.

Meanwhile, the miner has already started transporting the ore bypassing the villagers while the government is not co-operating with the villagers to extend the benefits to the locals, alleges Velip. 

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