Uncertainty looms large over the transportation of iron ore in certain parts of Sanguem and Quepem talukas in South Goa with villagers warning the state government against resumption of the activity without construction of a bypass road for the purpose.
Several villagers from Quepem, Sanguem and Curchorem areas met Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar today demanding the mining bypass be completed on war-footing, without which the ore would not be allowed to be transported in those areas.
“The state government has been dragging its feet over the crucial mining bypass which needs to be completed in three phases. Due to this, the trucks are forced to take the main road resulting in several fatal accidents,” Pradeep Kakodkar, a leader of “Mission Bypass” told reporters here after meeting Parsekar this afternoon.
He said the bypass in three different phases – Uguem to Guddemol, Guddemo to Curchorem and Pirla to Uguem – needs to be completed before resumption of the transportation of iron ore from various mining leases to a jetty at Curchorem.
Kakodkar and several others had began agitation stopping the iron ore transportation in March following an accident that killed two women.
People have been against the transportation of ore and stopped it since then demanding that no truck would be allowed to carry the ore without mining bypass.
The issue was recently raised during the Assembly Session wherein Parsekar had agreed that the mining bypass would be constructed as soon as possible.
Kakodkar today told reporters that around 6,000 trucks are operational in Sanguem, Quepem and Curchorem belt, but the current agitation has affected only a few of them and not the entire transportation.
He said iron ore is not a perishable commodity and the mining firms can wait for the completion of the bypass to export the ore.