Shah Comm to conduct two public hearings in Odisha

Central Govt appointed Shah Commission is probing into illegal mining activities in different parts of the country.

Last Updated: Dec 05, 2011, 22:56 PM IST

Bhubaneswar: The central government
appointed Shah Commission probing into illegal mining
activities in different parts of the country, would conduct at
least two public hearings during its seven-day visit to
Odisha, official sources said on Monday.

An eight-member team of the Commission led by its
Chairman Justice M B Shah would arrive here on Wednesday
for on the spot inquiry into illegal mining activities in the
state, they said.

After holding a discussion with government officials
on illegal mining activities and steps taken to stop it, the
members were scheduled to leave for Keonjhar district on
Thursday where illegal activities were high.

"The Commission will hold a public hearing in Keonjhar
and visit some mines in that district," a senior official at
the Steel and Mines department said adding the team would also
leave for Koida mining areas in Sundergarh district.

The Commission was also scheduled to conduct a public
hearing in the state capital also, the official said.

"We have complied with all the queries made by the
Commission. The state government will provide all assistance
to the Commission`s members during their visit," Chief
Secretary B K Patnaik told reporters adding the state
government has taken a series of steps to check illegal
mining activities.

The Commission had earlier sought clarification and
information from the state government, sources said adding
that the forest and environment department was told to submit
report on violation of forest acts.

The Shah Commission`s proposed visit was considered
significant as the state government had repeatedly refused to
hand over the investigation of the illegal mining issue to