Dream run over

Dream run over

Aparna Pallavi finds out why residents of Goa’s prettiest village cannot wish away mining which they hate

Irongate opened

Irongate opened

Shah Commission report shows how authorities, mine owners stripped Goa of iron

How Bellary was laid waste

Karnataka’s Lokayukta Santosh Hegde’s report is a sordid story on the rise of India’s mining poster boy, Bellary. The protagonists of the script, the Reddy brothers, used muscle and money to grease their way through government departments. Initially, it was all gold. But Hegde’s report exposed the dingy substrate of Bellary’s mining operations. Heads have rolled, and the political establishment of Karnataka has been shaken up. BJP leader B S Yeddyurappa was made to quit the chief minister’s post. The Supreme Court has stepped in to ban mining on the basis of a report by the Central Empowered Committee (CEC). The biggest losers have been the environment and the people living in the area. M Suchitra reports from Bellary and Kumar Sambhav Shrivastava analyses the CEC report

How Bellary was laid waste

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  • How come Andhra is left out

    How come Andhra is left out of the mining loot story ? It is good for the nation if we learn to keep environmental and political affiliations apart . Also everyone knows of the problems ....it would be great when environmental publications start focusing on the solutions as India has become a net importer of iron ore from a net exporter since mining was banned in some states and that has added to the rising current account deficit every month. In many parts of the world people are involved in sustainable mining. We in India need not re-invent the wheel but only follow those practices. Instead of that we are banning existing mining blocks which have already been devastated environmentally and planning to issue licenses in green field areas that will involve more cutting of forests.

    The existing areas under mining are inefficiently mined, only from the surface to keep mining costs to the bare minimum. Why is that happening? Is anyone talking about it. Where are the regulatory norms and the regulators which can be easily put in place, considering the enormous revenue generated from the resources and the technology advances of satellite imagery. Every cubic feet of mining resource extracted can be today monitored at a very reasonable cost by using technology if there is a political will. It is the MOEF that has to educate itself adopting global best practices and then enforce the norms, without political bias that today permits Jindal but not Vedanta to put up bauxite mining projects in India.

    Posted by: Anonymous | 2 years ago | Reply
  • In India lakhs of crores

    In India lakhs of crores worth minerals are mined every year all over the country. Some part is meeting the local needs and other part is meeting legal & illegal export in terms of raw and finished products. If one wants to present the real picture without any bias, start from the area in different states, quality of ore, leased area plus illegal mining area, local use, export (legal & illegal), etc. Then tell to the people who are the real culprits. Instead of that targeting one or two like politicians may not be a good practice. The article goes in this direction only. Against Gali the case was filed by politicians to serve their political game. Iron ore mining was not considered an important issue when the price was low. In Andhra Pradesh the mining of iron ore started even before Gali was born.

    Here the major issue is illegal export. Without the tacit support from port management it will not take place. Gali would have not exported illegally if any without the knowledge of Krishnapatnam port authorities. They are the main culprits. But, so much violation took place even Karnataka and Goa why Gali was put behind bars and others are freely moving? See the data presented in the article:

    2005-10 -- Karnataka -- production 213.81 mt -- export -- 61.25 mt -- illegal export -- 23.18 mt

    2005-10 -- Goa -- production 155.38 mt -- export 194.94 mt -- illegal export 39.56 mt

    This clearly indicate our legal system, investigating system and environmental movement system are serving the vested interests with biased mind set.

    You wrote Gali destroyed interstate boundary but at the same time you wrote Supreme Court asked survey to identify the boundary. This is not a good.

    I wrote an article in Vaartha [12-8-2010] -- "Mineral industry: discussion". In 2006, globally iron ore mining data shows: global 1690 mt; China 520 mt, Australia 270 mt, Brazil 300 mt, India 150 mt. In 2003 around 105.5 mt produced of which 31 mt exported. In our country High grade iron ore is available 1280 mt; MP 630 mt, Orissa 320 mt, Karnataka 220 mt, Bihar 85; medium grade 4200 mt; Bihar 1790, Orissa 1300, MP 485, Karnataka 440, Goa 150 mt -- low to medium grade in AP, Kerala, Maharashtra, Rajasthan. This clearly shows it is not alone Karnataka and Goa there are other states where iron ore mining is carried out. While writing such articles bring out all the culprits.

    Dr. S. Jeevananda Reddy

    Posted by: Anonymous | 2 years ago | Reply
  • Agreed; mining can never be

    Agreed; mining can never be sustainable, but then how do you get the metals to make all the things you need in the course of daily life? Right from the safety pins to the utensils you use... where does the metal come from?

    Posted by: Anonymous | 2 years ago | Reply
  • While I appreciate the rigour

    While I appreciate the rigour that has gone into documenting this report, it is not not nearly as hard-hitting as it ought to have been, given that we now have access to both The Shah Commission Reports and the CEC findings, and indeed Goa Foundation's petion before the court, or even better its counter-affidavit that severely demolishes the Parrikar government's somewhat spurious affidavit.

    What is also disturbing is CSE's opaqueness on where it actually stands as far as mining of ore goes. I mean how much of proof and evidence do we need to know that mining can NEVER be 'sustainable'...

    Posted by: Anonymous | 3 years ago | Reply
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