New Delhi: Former Goa Chief Minister Digambar Kamat has been indicted by a judicial commission for allowing illegal mining to continue unabated in the state resulting in amassing of wealth by certain individuals and companies at the cost of environment.
The Justice MB Shah Commission, which went into the issue of illegal mining of iron ore and manganese in Goa, cited instances of abuse of power by Kamat, who held the Mines portfolio over a 10-year period from 2002 in three governments, two headed by the Congress and one by the BJP.
The Commission also found "total lack of coordination" in different wings of the Union Ministry of Environment and Forests which "resulted in illegalities and consequential ecological damage."
The Shah Commission Report, along with the Action Taken Memorandum, was tabled in Parliament on Friday by Union Mines Minister Dinsha Patel.
The Commission has found several orders passed by Kamat including on application for condonation of delay in renewal of mining lease as "against the law" and "abuse of power" as the Central Government is the ultimate authority in this regard.
The report has also come down heavily on Kamat for ignoring complaints about the destruction caused by illegal mining in the coastal state.
"It is amply clear that the Minister of Mines and Chief Minister (Kamat) were well aware about non-compliance of conditions and other illegalities/irregularities happening in the mining sector," the report said.