The Goa Mining People’s Front has appealed to Chief Minister Pramod Sawant to make efforts for early resumption of mining in Goa as it will help shore up the state’s economy amid the COVID-19 outbreak.
The group has been repeatedly issuing statements seeking resumption of mining in the state.
“While fighting COVID-19 was a priority for our state, Goa now faces a herculean task of getting its economy back on track. The closure of mining industry had already resulted in a grim situation for the state’s economy which was solely reliant upon the tourism industry to lubricate the wheels of state economy to a certain extent,” GMPF said in a recent letter to the chief minister.
Mining operations in Goa came to a grinding halt in March 2018 after the Supreme Court quashed 88 mining leases.
“However in the present COVID-19 crisis, the tourism industry will take a big hit resulting in steep loss to the states exchequer. Immediate resumption of mining in the state would help in providing much needed solace to the already strained state’s finances,” the letter said.
The mining dependents, the letter said, were hopeful that the upcoming hearing before the Supreme Court “would clear the path for resumption of mining activities in Goa. However, since the apex court is only hearing urgent matters after pre-mentioning “it looks unlikely that the Goa’s mining matter would be heard….We therefore urge your good office to kindly file an urgency application before the Supreme Court citing livelihood and existential crisis faced by 3,00,000 Goans…as the need for urgent hearing of the matter,” the letter said.
In case there is a likelihood that the Supreme Court may not hear or decide on Goa mining issue soon “we request your good self to kindly take up the case of legislative amendment with the Union Government at the earliest,” it added.
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