AP CM scraps GO on bauxite mining

Our Bureau | | Updated on: Jun 25, 2019

Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jaganmohan Reddy CH_VIJAYA BHASKAR

Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jaganmohan Reddy’s decision to scrap the GO on bauxite mining has been welcomed by NGOs, and social and environmental activists here.

The Chief Minister announced the decision at the conference of the police and IAS officials which concluded at Amaravati on Tuesday.

Activists opposing bauxite mining plan in the eastern ghats of Visakhapatnam have been urging the State government to revoke the GO Ms. No. 97 allowing AP Mineral Development Corporation to mine bauxite ore.

The Chief Minister said the decision had been taken to withdraw the GO, as the Girijans in the area were against it. The proposal for bauxite mining in the agency (tribal tracts) area of Visakhapatnam district was first floated during the period when his father, the late YS Rajasekhara Reddy, was in power, as the Congress Chief Minister.

However, subsequent governments did not go ahead with the proposal due to the opposition by activists.

The failure to annul the GO triggered widespread protests from anti-mining activists. The GO was issued on November 5, 2015 allowing APMDC to mine in 1,212 hectares of reserve forest area in Chintapalle and Jerella blocks.

Former IAS officer and social activist EAS Sarma said the decision taken by the new Chief Minister to revoke the earlier GO on bauxite mining in the agency area is welcome.

“Minerals like bauxite/alumina are scarce resources. Aluminium is a strategic metal that is used widely in the aviation industry and other manufacturing processes in the west. The price at which Indian miners export alumina is several times lower than the global price, which implies enormous scope for corruption and black money generation,” he said.

Hailing the decision, former Tribal Welfare Minister and Jana Sena leader P Balaraju said all the decisions taken by the new government should be implemented in true letter and spirit. He said bauxite was being secretly mined in the agency areas in the guise of laterite which should be stopped immediately.

AP Girijana Sangham State committee member Killo Surendra said the revocation of GO was praiseworthy and demanded a categorical statement not to allow bauxite mining in any form.

Published on June 25, 2019
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