Protest in New Delhi against Goa mining ban

Panaji, March 25 (IANS) Over 1,000 Goa workers affected by a mining ban in their state will stage a two-day protest April 16-17 in New Delhi to press for resumption of mining activities, a union leader said Monday.

Speaking to reporters in Panaji, Suhas Naik of the Goa Mining Peoples’ Front (GPMF) said that over 1,000 agitators would stage a protest at Jantar Mantar in New Delhi.
“We have been protesting in Goa for months now. But it is time that we move to Delhi and pressurise the central government,” Naik said and demanded resumption of mining in Goa.
The Goa government has already announced a dole for those who have been affected by the mining ban, even as civil society groups and legal luminaries like former Lokayukta Santosh Hegde have criticised the doles.
Mining has been banned in Goa for over four months now after the Supreme Court, hearing a petition filed by activist-lawyer Prashant Bhushan, announced a probe into Goa’s Karnataka-like illegal mining scandal.
The petition follows the revelation of a Rs.35,000 crore scam exposed by a judicial commission headed by Justice M.B. Shah, who has said that top mining companies, politicians as well as bureaucrats were beneficiaries of the illegal mining.