Kamat discusses mining issue with commission
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Last Updated: Monday, September 19, 2011, 14:12
Panaji: Goa Chief Minister Digambar Kamat met members of the Shah Commission as a part of the inquiry initiated against the illegal mining trade in the state.

Kamat, who also holds the mining portfolio, had a lengthy discussion with Justice M B Shah and his key member U V Singh here yesterday.

Shah Commission had said that if required they would summon Chief Minister for the inquiry. Sources said that Kamat was not summoned but went on his own to meet the members.

Another Congress minister Vishwajit Rane also met the Commission expressing the apprehensions that legal mining should not be affected in a quest to stop illegal mining in the state.

"I told the Commission that legal mining should not be stopped. There are several thousand families who are dependent on this trade," he said adding that Bicholim and Sattari talukas, represented by him, has several mining leases and people dependent on them to eke out living.

"After Bellary situation, there is a fear that Commission's report will also clamp down on legal mining in the state.

There should be proper line drawn between legal and illegal," Rane said.

The minister clarified that he was neither summoned nor sent by Congress party to represent before Commission.

"I went there on my own," he said.

Eight teams of Shah Commission aided by state government have launched extensive investigation illegal mining in the state.

As per rough estimates, illegal mining in Goa is pegged to be between Rs 1,200 crore to Rs 10,000 crore. Goa exported around 54 million metric tones of iron ore last year through its two ports.


First Published: Monday, September 19, 2011, 14:12

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