Panaji: In a move that can derail Goa government`s plan to allow handling of mining rejects, the Union Ministry of Environment and Forest (MoEF) has said that environmental clearance is mandatory before allowing these dumps to be exported.
MoEF Secretary Tishya Chatterjee has written to Goa Chief Secretary Sanjay Srivastava stating that exporting dumps without obtaining environmental clearance (EC) is an illegal act and the state government should immediately stop it.
Goa government wants to allow handling of iron ore dumps as a part of its mining policy, which is being drafted. The export of rejects is currently banned since October, 2010.
It has come to the notice of MOEF that mining of low grade ore or rejects dumps is being carried outside the state of Goa without obtaining EC, the secretary has said.
The Ministry has pointed out that EC granted for mining leases by them did not include dump mining. "Any dump mining being carried out in Goa is therefore completely violating conditions of EC granted by Ministry and is illegal," the letter said.
"It is requested that immediate action may be taken by state government to forthwith stop all such dump mining being carried out in the state of Goa," the letter added.
The Goa government has been asked to submit an action taken report within two weeks.
Meanwhile, Srivastava said the letter has been referred to state Principal Secretary (Mines) R K Verma for further action.