‘Goa mines dept unable to explain iron ore royalty losses to PAC’

PTI Panaji | Updated on February 26, 2011 Published on February 26, 2011

Goa mines department has failed to explain the royalty loss on almost one crore tonne of iron ore exported between 2003-05.

The Goa Legislative Assembly’s Public Accounts Committee (PAC) had questioned the mines department to reason the losses but the department floundered.

The PAC Chairman, Mr Manohar Parrikar, said in the absence of proper mechanism, the mines department had let the revenue losses in the form of royalty.

“The mines department has shown its inability to explain the revenue losses,” he said adding that the Comptroller Auditor General (CAG) in its report had mentioned about these losses.

The leader of the Opposition said that the legal mines in the state are not regulated which leads to these issues.

“Goa government has powers to formulate rules and regulations to control extraction and storage of minerals. If powers are executed then legal mining can be regulated,” Mr Parrikar added.

PAC has asked the State Transport Director, Mr Arun Desai, to check unlicensed drivers of mining trucks. “As per rough estimates, at least 25 per cent of these drivers don’t have licences,” he claimed.

The Committee has directed the Director General of Police, Mr B.S. Bassi, to form a squad headed by the Deputy Superintendent of Police to curb the illegalities like overloading by these trucks. Both the departments have been asked to submit the action taken report to PAC as soon as possible.

Mr Parrikar said mining trucks have become a major bone of contention in rural Goa where people are on road, almost every day, complaining about dust pollution and accidents.

“There are some road stretches where as much as 15,000 truck trips are ferried on a single day,” he added.

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Published on February 26, 2011
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