Goa’s CM attends a high-level meeting with Union ministers in Delhi, led by Amit Shah; Sawant requests Centre to intervene and ensure mining activities resume post monsoon
NEW DELHI/PANJIM: Re-initiating the process to resume the iron ore mining industry in Goa, which has been shut for the last 16 months, Union Home Minister and BJP President Amit Shah has directed the Union Mines Ministry to revisit the entire issue and submit a report within eight days.
Shah, on Friday, spearheaded yet another joint attempt of the Centre and the Goa government to restart the iron ore mines. Shah chaired a high-level meeting, which was attended by five union ministers – Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, Mines Minister Prahlad Joshi, Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar, Railway and Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal and Petroleum and Steel Minister Dharmendra Pradhan.
Chief Minister Dr Pramod Sawant, Chief Secretary Parimal Rai, Mines Secretary Daulat Hawaldar were also part of the meeting, which is seen as a first round of discussion.
Sawant in a tweet claimed, “Shri Amit Shah has given directions to Mines Ministry to revisit the entire issue and report to him.”
He added that he “put forth issues of Goa’s mining sector in a fruitful high level meeting with a Group of Ministers led by Home Minister Amit Shah.”
Speaking to Herald from Delhi, Sawant said, “We had a detailed discussion wherein Supreme Court judgment was also put forth. We have requested the Centre to intervene immediate and work out some step to ensure that mining activities resume post monsoon.”
He added, “Another round of meetings will take place in next eight days, when Union Secretary will present the report. In that meeting, we will get some fair idea on what Centre's move is to restart mining.”
Sawant, however, refused to give details as what are the measures that State has suggested to Centre for resumption of the activities.
Joshi hails from Karnataka and so he is well-versed with an earlier shutdown of the iron ore mines in his State by the Supreme Court. The onus has fallen on him to provide a report to Shah with a solution.
Instead of giving any inputs on the meeting, Joshi just retweeted Sawant’s tweet on the fresh attempt to resume mining in the State.
Tomar was the mines minister in the Modi 1.0 government and as such he is well-versed with the issues of Goa’s mines that he had tried to resolve during his tenure but without success.