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Moratorium on mining to be reviewed on Dec 31
August 22, 2012
PANJIM: In what can be seen as good news for the mine owners in the state, the Union Ministry of Environment and Forest (MoEF) has declared that the moratorium on renewal and granting of new mining leases in Goa would be reviewed on December 31, 2012.
Union Minister for MoEF, Jayanthi Natarajan in a written reply during the ongoing
parliament session, has said that for the purpose of ensuring protection of biodiversity of Western Ghats, there are some restrictions for setting up of industries in certain ecologically significant areas of the region up to December 31, 2012, including mining projects in Goa.
The moratorium imposed in February 2010 by then union minister for environment and forest Jairam Ramesh, had led to almost 1144 application of mining leases from Goa, being kept pending.
The former Chief Minister Digambar Kamat who was on the backfoot due to the allegations of illegal mining, had claimed that the moratorium was due to his efforts.
The ban was reportedly imposed after Kamat wrote to MoEF asking for a moratorium.
The ministry while fixing the moratorium had directed Goa government to formulate State Mining policy, which was pending since 2008.
Manohar Parrikar led government has already drafted the Mining policy 2012, which has been kept in public domain till September 10.
The policy has recommended a cap on iron ore export upto 45 million metric ones (MMT), including extraction from dump up to 20MMT.
The moratorium has left almost 1144 applications pending with the government.
Goa has 765 fresh applications which are pending including 12 reconnaissance permits (RP), 660 prospecting licence (PL) and 93 mining leases (ML) and 379 application pending renewal as on December 2011.