Ponda: As the Goa mining ban completes four years, the Goa Mining People’s Front (GMPF), which represents over 3 lakh mining dependents of the state, has appealed to government at the Centre and the newly elected MLA’s in the state to facilitate immediate resumption of mining. The Hon’ble Apex court judgement dated 7th February 2018 in Goa Mining case ordered closure of mining operation cancelling the second renewal of leases granted by Government of Goa, affecting the livelihoods of over 3 lakh mining dependents in the state with over 75000 employment in the state.
The state government under the leadership of Dr. Pramod Sawant has been promising resumption of mining activities since he took over the charge as Chief Minister of the state and has made umpteen attempts to convince the central leadership for a solution, but the attempt has not yielded any results. The central BJP leaders including India’s home minister Mr. Amit Shah has again assured solution within 6 months resolving the Goa mining stalemate during recent election campaigning. The GMPF now demand that the promise of solution with 6 months be treated as agenda to deliver and not just another election gimmick like in the past. Now that the party has got a second term, GMPF has urged the government to immediately act in the matter as it has bearing on the livelihoods of 300,000 people.
Mr. Puti also added “Goa Mining Dependents people have completed 4 years of financial turmoil and have eroded all the saving. It is unfortunate that the livelihood plea of over 3 lakh people is simply ignored by the Central Government for last 4 years. Nearly 90% of mining dependent people are in acute financial difficulty with 100% loss of income or are earning paltry sum that’s not what they deserve. The elections are now over and concrete solutions needs to be discussed across the table along with concerned stakeholders including employees , truck owners, Barge owners and mining service provider. There is a huge possibility of last 3000 odd employees losing their employment and with that so also the current lingering truck and Barge related business and employment . The difficulty in getting a solution that the attempt is not for a sincere and fair solution in the interest of State of Goa and its
people. Solution announced so far are meaningless such as auction the leases through Corporation and are designed in the interest of few individuals dreaming and fancying to make the best out of this crisis at the cost of people’s misery. Whatever the solution it must be in the interest of common mining dependent people and for increasing the state Revenue. No solution that will exploit the Goan mining dependent people will be workable as the awareness among people is high . Also a solution that will get entangled in the courts in view of pending cases on perpetual rights will be a disaster. We are still of the opinion that any practical solution will need some sort of legislative amends to get over this mining imbroglio. The matter of perpetual rights of the erstwhile mining companies will not let Government to take a decision on any solution as admitted by the Union Government in their affidavit to Hon’ble Supreme Court in Feb’19. There is no attempt on addressing the things what needs to be addressed hence any solution has to address that matter first ”
The affected people have appeal to the central and state government to treat the Goa mining issue as imperative and provide relief in the matter. Goans have also urged for immediate resumption of mining activities in the state in the interest of the state economy. All mining activities in the state were suddenly stopped on March 15, 2018, following a Supreme Court order.
GMPF has urged the government to immediately act in the matter so that people can once again earn sustained income and plan a better future for their families.