Manohar Parrikar: BJP to review two reports on mining if voted to power

Written by PTI | Panaji | Updated: Apr 3 2014, 01:53am hrs
The BJP has assured to review two controversial reports related to the mining industry in Goa, which were approved by the UPA II government, if the party is voted to power at the Centre, as it will inflict harm on further development of the coastal state.

Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar told reporters that the controversial Kasturirangan report on the Western Ghats, and a notification by Union Ministry of Environment and Forest (MoEF) pausing mining activity within one kilometre of wildlife sanctuaries with immediate effect, will be reviewed without delay as they are detrimental to the state welfare and were unleashed by the Congress-led government without any reasoning.

The Chief Minister claimed that Kasturirangan report declares 109 villages in Goa as being part of the eco-sensitive zone where any kind of commercial activity would require Environment Clearance from the MoEF.

"The report tends to convert 40 percent of Goa into eco-sensitive zone and takes away right of the state government to rule these areas," he said.

Parrikar said the state government will not accept the report which is "highly unconstitutional" and "robs away its rights to rule."

He said that entire mining industry will have to be shut down, if the report is implemented.

Parrikar termed the report as "light study" conducted by the members in two-three sittings.

"The eco-sensitivity issue needs proper scientific study," he added.

Referring to another mines related issue, Parrikar said the draft notification by MoEF recommends one kilometre as a buffer zone around the wildlife sanctuaries, which was also the suggestion of the state government.

"But the MoEF notification also mentions that all the mines in one kilometre buffer zone will have to be shut down immediately. This recommendation is against the suggestion by state government which had thought of phasing out the mines in buffer zone in next 5-10 years," the CM said.

"BJP will review this notification to include the clause of phasing out the mines in buffer zone in particular time period," he added.