Raising a grave concern over the state of Goa’s economy, members of the state legislative assembly on Tuesday asked the government to disclose its plan for resolving the mining imbroglio. “We have been hearing only stories. Many delegations have met central ministers. Now, it is high time the Chief Minister Pramod Sawant disclosed his plan to resume mining in the state. Whether you will establish a corporation, or
you intend to adopt the auction medium, let us know it,” demanded Porvorim MLA Rohan Khaunte while speaking during the discussion on demands for mines.
Khaunte sought an explanation from the government over the status of 15th Finance Commission, pointing out that June 30 was the deadline set by the Centre for states to convey their requirements.
“If the small states like Mizoram can claim Rs 94,000 crore then why can’t we ask a similar amount under the 15th Finance Commission? I want to know how much funds the Goa government has sought from the Centre till now,” he asked.
Shiroda MLA Subhash Shirodkar said the people from six talukas have been badly affected by the mining closure.
“Families have been affected socially, educationally and economically; mining companies have been laying off the Goans who have been working for decades in their establishments. I appeal to the Chief Minister to ensure that these workers are reinstated immediately once the mining resumes,” he said.
Opposition leader Digambar Kamat claimed that solution to the ongoing mining crisis was ‘not so difficult’ to find, and stressed on the need to study concerned old laws and the Mines and Mineral (Development and Regulation) Act.
He said the government should receive around Rs 70 crore as compensation owing to the goods and services tax revenue loss.
Marcaim MLA Ramkrishna alias Sudin Dhavalikar said the closure of mining has affected not only people dependent on it, but also the state economy.
He called for all efforts to restart mining operations at the earliest.