40 MLAs bowed, created mining mafia: GF

GOANEWS DESK, PANAJI | 17 September 2013 21:48 IST

Goa Foundation in the Supreme Court has accused all the 40 MLAs of several Legislative Assemblies of bowing down before the mine owners and ultiamtely creating a mining mafia in Goa.

In its 24-page submission, the petitioner has thus also urged the Supreme Court not to presently hand over control and regulation of mining to Goa Government until the state government displays its ability to handle the ore resource in public interest.

Following are the extracts from the allegations made against the political class of Goa, in relation to the mining industry:

“There is connivance and collaboration of the political class in the illegal mining, large-scale corruption, and defrauding of the State of its revenues while politicians and MLAs earn handsomely in private.

The vulnerability of Goa’s political class to the powerful mining lobby emanates from the large size of the profits from mining, which is twice the size of the state budget and revenues.

This skew is precisely what makes the Goa government (irrespective of which political party holds the reins) and its 40 MLAs bow to the wishes of miners and sabotage democratic governance and why no cognizance was taken of the destruction of environment and public health despite protests and agitations and court petitions.”

The petitioner has also countered the argument put forward by the political class that ban on mining has resulted into declining economic growth of the country. It states:

Today an argument is being sought to be advanced in public forums by the Ministers, private companies and their advocates, that the orders of the Hon’ble Supreme Court in the Karnataka mining scandal, the Goa mining scandal, 2G case, coal scam, etc., are the reason for the decline in economic growth rate, private investments and depreciation of the rupee.

The subtext of this argument is that plunder and loot of natural resources like coal and iron ore by a few crony capitalists with proximity to the establishment is good for the growth rate and therefore this Court should allow such a state of affairs to continue and forsake the common man.

However, as has been found by experience, such a road to wealth in the hands of few companies, more often than not leads to misery and the creation of a mafia as it clearly did in Goa.

Despite some 100 mines being operational in Goa, only three companies were now controlling, between themselves, 70% of the export of ore.


The petitioner has also quoted Shah Commission report as well as the report submitted by the Central Empowered Committee to the apex court, to substantiate its allegation against the ‘power’ful political class.

Justice M.B. Shah has clearly brought out the environmental devastation, diminishing reserves, creation of a local mafia and complete collapse of the administration in the State of Goa.

This even posed a threat to democracy itself as MLAs and even Ministers got into the act. Their association with illegal mining, clearly established by Justice Shah, ensured that no official would dare interfere with the plunder and looting, despite huge number of complaints.

CEC, the expert committee of this Hon’ble Court, visited Goa and confirmed the findings. CEC report on Goa is no less harsh than Justice Shah in his report.

Justice Shah concluded that if mining had continued as before, ore would be exhausted in 9 years. Let alone the demands of intergenerational equity, such rapacity would lead to deprivation of even the present generation!

In view of this, the Goa Foundation has pleaded with the Supreme Court not to hand over the control of mining operations into the hands of the Goa government, unless it proves its ability.

“It is thus abundantly clear from the response of the Goa Govt to the mining scam, the measures that it has taken so far and the affidavits filed in response to this petition, that the Goa Govt is unable to make any long-term decisions for the good of the State that may involve inconveniencing the powerful miners and the Court will therefore need to compel the govt through its orders till the situation improves.

Hence, this Hon’ble Court should not hand over control and regulation of mining at the present moment to the Goa Govt. until the State Government displays adequate potential and proof of its ability to handle the ore resource in public interest and the Court is convinced of its seriousness of purpose.”


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Previous Comments

The Natural Resources of the state need to be handled with all transparency.

The windfall profits need to be re invested in Goa to create right employment opportunities.

As the price of ore goes up in International markets, the taxes on ore need to go up to mop up higher revenues to the State...

No strong justification to increase the cap imposed by Apex Court...

Depleting groundwater due to continuous pumping out of water from mining pits could create water shortage.

Land devastation due to mining deposits destroy fertile land...Needs due compensation.

The narrow road could kill people in accidents...Widening of roads need to be done using a part of Mining profits...

A study needs to be done about how many migrant labour are employed by the Mining industry and what is their wage structure?

- vishwas prabhudesai, loliem | 10 th May 2015 17:20

 

Thanks to the GOA FOUNDATION, who came as a Savior for Goans. Goans was continuously breathing the poisonous air. Thanks to the SUPREME COURT for banning mining in Goa. Mining closure has given fresh air & greenery look. Agriculture has come alive. Thanks to all the ANTI-MINING ACTIVISTS who works tirelessly & fearlessly in Saving Goa and not allowing to become another Khedernarth Tragedy in Goa. THANKS.

- John Ferns, Goa | 18 th September 2013 16:23

 

Why only singlig out the 40 alibabas.

All the houses in villages in the mining are used to get their monthly doles to keep their mouth shut on pollution.

All the people in the mining area have 5-6 trucks registered in their names including goverment servants.

There where many deaths due to accidents which has now stopped but gambling has increased to get fast money.

All the villages are green today after the closure of mining and growing of paddy crops.

Better sense prevail on the people of Goa who says mining is their livelihood.

- Elvis, Panajim | 18 th September 2013 09:10

 

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