‘Sab kaa Saath, Minewalon kaa Vikaas’: Gawas

GOANEWS DESK, PANAJI | 28 March 2016 21:56 IST

‘Sab kaa Saath, Minewalon kaa Vikaas’ is the way environmentalist Ramesh Gawas has described yet another move mooted by Goa government to give further concessions to the mining lease holders.

He was reacting to the news “Miners may get royalty exemption and 70% price for remaining e-auctions” published recently by goanews.com.

Mines department plans to e-auction remaining 80 lakh MT of iron ore in the possession of the state government at a slashed price of Rs 350 per metric tonne while also not charging them royalty if the same lease holder, in whose lease property the ‘illegal’ ore is lying, successfully bids for it.

“All the states in the country should learn from Goa how to take every opportunity to help the mining companies to openly rob the state under the guise of exemptions”, said Gawas.

While the centre has granted total exemption on the export duty of iron ore, the state government has slashed all other duties and fees by 95%, on the ore miners would now extract.

“This BJP government was blaming the environmentalists for causing loss to the state exchequer due to mining ban. Now who is subsidising mining and causing loss to the state treasury?”, asked Gawas.

He feels such concessions are not at all necessary since the miners have made huge amount of profits during the boom by selling ore at the rate of $175 per metric tonne.

“I am certain the ‘Royals of Goa’ ruling the state would ultimately benefit from this royalty exemption. We have a government here of the people for the miners by the ruling politicians”, he quipped.

This is the reason, feels Gawas, mining activist Ravindra Velip from Caurem was blind folded and beaten up in a judicial lock-up.

Gawas recalled that Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar had issued a public threat that nothing shall be tolerated against ‘smooth’ mining activity.

Assault on Ravindra should be viewed in the light of this threat given by the chief minister of the state, he said.

Gawas however sarcastically commented that the BJP government should declare the mining lease areas as ‘autonomous states’ by granting dual citizenship to the MLAs, who are more loyal to these neo-states than the state of Goa. 

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Iron ore price is $56 dollars today and the government is selling it $5. Why 10% of market value. This implies one will make 11 times margin on raw material.

- Frank, Vasco | 29 th March 2016 04:41


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