Panaji: Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar on Wednesday alleged that a several Congress leaders including two former chief ministers and current state unit chief Subhash Shirodkar were involved in illegal mining activity.
"There are many Congress leaders who are involved in illegal mining. Subhash Shirodkar (Goa Pradesh Congress Committee chief) is involved in it. Former chief minister Digambar Kamat is also into it," Parrkiar alleged.
He was talking to reporters on the sidelines of the foundation stone laying ceremony for new parking terminus in the city.
Parrikar said former chief minister Pratapsinh Rane, who was incharge of mines department, is also involved and ex-urban development minister Joaquim Alemao too has been part of illegal mining activity. "There are many more from Congress party who are involved in it," he said.
Reacting to the charge, Congress said Parrikar was deriving political mileage from the issue.
"The chief minister was involved in politicking over the issue rather than solving it. Parrikar is not interested in starting the legal mines as soon as possible which will solve the problem of lakhs of people genuinely dependent on mining," Congress spokesman Aleixo Reginaldo Lourenco told PTI.
Supreme Court in its recent verdict has stopped extraction and transport of major mineral in the state of Goa in the wake of Justice M B Shah Commission`s findings regarding illegal mining.
On tourism, Parrikar said erstwhile Digambar Kamat government did not utilise Rs 82 crore granted by Centre for development of the sector in the state.
Similarly, the Kamat government did not use Rs 362 crore released by Centre for undertaking developmental projects spanning various sectors in the state, he said.