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Iron ore worth Rs 1,900 cr illegally mined between 2009-16 in Goa: CAG

They observed violation of provision of Acts and Rules made for regulation of mining operation

Press Trust of India  |  Panaji 

iron, ore, mining, mine
Iron ore opencast mining landscape lit with warm light. Photo: Shutterstock

The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) report has pointed out that overall Rs 1,900 crore worth illegal extraction of was reported in the state between 2009-16 in violation of the and (ECs).

The performance audit on systems and controls in collection of minerals receipts has revealed a number of system and compliance deficiencies, the report which was tabled on the floor of the House mentioned on Monday.

"We observed violation of the provision of the Acts and Rules made for regulation of mining operation in the State.

"Violating the provisions of the MCD (Mineral Conservation and Development) rules and MC (Mineral Concession) rules the lessees had valued Rs 1,529.64 crore in excess of the mining plan," the report said.

"The lessee had also valued Rs 374.99 crore in excess of quantity allowed under environment clearances," it added.

has said the audit team checked 38 cases to ascertain whether the limit has been observed by lessee during the period from 2009-16.

"We observed in five cases, the lessee had extracted 30.02 lakh metric tonnes of valued at Rs 374.99 crore in excess of the limit. No reason for extraction of in excess to environment clearance limit was found," he said.

"In respect of seven leases the quantity as per the approved was 25.94 lakh MT during the period 2009-13 against this the quantity actually extracted during the period was 98.35 lakh MT. This resulted in unauthorised extraction of 72.41 MT of iron ore valued at Rs 1,529.64 crore," the has pointed out.

The mining industry in had faced ban due to order in September 2012, which was later lifted in April 2014.

The actual extraction of iron ore began only in November 2015.

The CAG report which audits various departments and their performance till March 2016 has castigated State (DMG) for not taking action to recover the penalties under MMDR Act, 1957 for excess extraction over the limits.

"The DMG failed to monitor unauthorised extraction, transportation and storage of minerals effectively. Due to poor monitoring, the short declaration of 27.7 lakh MT iron ore valued Rs 118.01 crore extracted by lease holders was not detected by it," CAG has said.

The audit report also states that the DMG failed to detect the suppression of closing stock iron ore which resulted in short collection of royalty of Rs 35.53 crore.

"There was lack of internal control within the department to ascertain the lawful dispatch of minerals, independent assessment of grades of ore, and timely assessment of royalty dues.

"These results in short recovery of royalty to the tune of Rs 19.78 crore," the CAG has said.

"Short collection of stamp duty by the DMG and consequent short collection of registration fee by registration authorities totaling Rs 159.70 crore was also noticed," it adds.

"There was a lack of coordination between DMG, in regulating the mining operations in the state," CAG has said.

"Coupled with inadequate system of monitoring and poor internal control mechanism the regulation of mining in the state was hampered.

"It would be in the interest of the state's revenue, if corrective steps are taken timely to rectify the defects pointed out by the audit," it added.

First Published: Mon, August 07 2017. 20:20 IST