People out, miners in

Last Updated: Tuesday 25 August 2015

Opportunity to truly reform mining governance to balance economic growth with social justice and environmental safety has been lost
Author: Srestha Banerjee
The upper house of Parliament on Friday passed the controversial mining bill, which is perceived as anti-people and pro-miners.

The Mines and Minerals (Development & Regulation) (Amendment) Bill (MMDR), 2015, tabled before Parliament to amend the mining Act of 1957, was passed on the strength of 117 votes; 69 members voted against it and two abstained from voting. The members of Janata Dal (United) walked out in protest as voting started.
Deposition urges Parliament to stop revisions from resulting in exploitative mining
Author: DTE Staff
The Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) Amendment Bill (MMDR) 2015 will not resolve outstanding issues of the mining sector, Delhi-based non-profit Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) said in its deposition before the Rajya Sabha Select Committee. It will instead increase the marginalisation of local people, mainly tribals, and also harm the environment.

CSE told the committee on March 14 that MMDR Bill 2011 had moved ahead from 1957 by attempting to balance mineral extraction with the interests of people and environment. But MMDR 2015 is one-sided, it said, as the Bill protects the interests of miners; increases revenue for states; but does little to protect the interests of people and environment.
Ideas to improve environmental and social performance of the sector have been thrown out of the window
Author: Chandra Bhushan
Amidst protests by the Opposition, the Lok Sabha, on March 3, passed the Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) Amendment Bill (MMDR) 2015 to replace the Ordinance promulgated in January. The Bill has a few more steps to go before it becomes law. But it is important that we understand its implications on people and environment, and on the future of the mining sector itself.

For over a decade, we have debated the need to amend the MMDR Act 1957. The conversation intensified with the publication of the report of the High Level Committee on National Mineral Policy (2006) and the 2008 report of Centre for Science and Environment (Rich Lands, Poor People: Is ‘Sustainable’ Mining Possible?). Then the Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) Bill 2011 was drafted and introduced in Parliament. But due to disagreements within the UPA government and pressure from industry, this Bill was allowed to lapse in February 2014.
CSE's observations and recommendations about proposals in the ordinance
Report suggests mechanisms of profit-sharing which can be practiced in India without affecting the profitability of mining companies
BOOK Available in CSE store
Sustainable' Mining Possible This book is an attempt to document all the complexities of mining. While, it is true that mining is essential, it is not a simple 'dig and sell' proposition for a country like India. Its challenges are immense. The book gives an overview of these challenges - protection and preservation of environment and inclusive development of all sections of society - and where does the Indian Mineral Industry stand today.

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