Local Goa News

Monday, November 21, 2016

Goenchi Mati to support party that accepts its agenda

Claude says mining is single largest source of corruption and root cause of poor governance; says loss is nearly ` 10 lakh per person in the State
PANJIM: The Goenchi Mati movement, backed by NGO Goa Foundation, has decided to extend its support in the 2017 elections to the political party that assures to cancel all iron ore mining leases, have mining taken over by the State government and recover dues from those involved in illegal mining.

Addressing the media on Monday, Goa Foundation Director Dr Claude Alvares, releasing the Goenchi Mati manifesto, said that mining is the single largest source of corruption in Goa and the root cause of poor governance in the State.
“It is estimated that mining has resulted in a loss of over Rs 65,000 crore to the State revenue until September 2012. By renewing the same iron ore leases, the government has further tagged a loss to State of Rs 79,000 crore. Together, the total loss to the State is Rs 1,44,000 crore,” he said. Putting it in perspective he said, “Nearly Rs 10 lakh per person in the State.”
Goenchi Mati has forwarded its manifesto to all political parties in the State except for MGP, demanding to know their stand on the issues. “For the coming elections, we will support the political party that assures to fulfill our manifesto. The party can be even BJP,” Alvares said.
The manifesto states that mining of major as well as minor minerals should be based on the principle that the people of Goa own the minerals as they have inherited it.
“We want that all the iron ore leases be cancelled and by 2020 they should be in possession of the State government. We don’t want it to be auctioned but want government to run it by contracting extraction process to the mining companies,” Goa Foundation member Rahul Basu said adding ‘in case of minor minerals, we want it to be auctioned’.
They also demanded recovery of the pending dues from those involved in illegal mining and depositing the amount into the Permanent Fund. “All the new mining will be done by the government with a goal of achieving Zero Loss Mining and Zero Waste Mining,” Basu said.
Goenchi Mati has decided to approach the village committees, religious bodies and other stakeholders highlighting the crucial issue.

Herald Goa News

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