Herald: Delay in mining corridors delay resumption of mining

Delay in mining corridors delay resumption of mining

21 Sep 2016 12:45am IST
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21 Sep 2016 12:45am IST

The delay over construction of mining corridors is likely to be proven as major hurdle before the State government for resumption of mining activities from the coming season in October, with villagers from Sanguem and Quepem taluka warning to protest against iron ore transportation if the corridors are not built. 

Several villagers from Quepem, Sanguem and Curchorem areas of South Goa met Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar on Tuesday morning demanding that the mining by-pass should be completed on war-footing, without which the ore would not be allowed to be transported in those areas.

Chief Minister has assured to come out with an amicable solution on the matter.

The villagers have demanded that the Government had in 2011 proposed mining corridor in three different phases – Uguem to Guddemol, Guddemo to Curchorem and Pirla to Uguem, needs to be completed before resuming the transportation of iron ore from various mining leases to a jetty at Curchorem.

“State government has been dragging its feet over the crucial mining by-pass which needs to be completed in three phases. Due to this the trucks are forced to take the main road resulting in several fatal accidents,” Pradeep Kakodkar, a leader of “Mission Bypass” told reporters after meeting Parsekar this afternoon.

Kakodkar along with other villagers had begun agitation stopping the iron ore transportation in March this year following a fatal accident that killed two ladies. The people have stopped the transportation since then demanding that no truck would be allowed to carry the ore without mining bypass.

Kakodkar today told reporters that around 6,000 trucks are operational in Sanguem, Quepem and Curchorem belt, but the current agitation has affected only few truck trips, and not the entire transportation. “The truckers drive rash and in negligent manner. With narrow village roads and trucks being parked on the either side of the road, it becomes very difficult for the normal commuter to travel,” he explained adding ‘though government has fixed the speed limit, no trucks follow it’. 

“The iron ore mining transportation has killed nearly 70-80 people till now in the belt,” he added stating ore is not a perishable commodity and the mining firms can wait for the completion of by pass to export the ore.

The issue was recently raised during the Assembly Session wherein Chief Minister had assured that the construction of mining corridors would be either undertaken by the mining firms or through utilizing the funds collected under the District Mineral Foundation (DMF).

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