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Goa: Hundreds of mining dependents take out protest march in Panaji

Iron ore extraction activities have been shut in the state for last three years

iron ore miners | Goa | Centre

Press Trust of India  |  Panaji 

New ground realities in iron ore
Representational image of iron ore mining

Hundreds of people dependent on Goa's took out a march here on Monday to protest against the failure of the and the state government to resume iron ore extraction activities which have been shut in the state for last three years.

On February 7, 2018, the Supreme Court quashed renewal of 88 mining leases in Goa, resulting in the closure of the industry which used to be a major revenue earner for the coastal state.

On Monday, hundreds of mining dependents marched from the Panaji bus stand to the historic Azad Maidan here as a mark of protest, organised by Mining People's Front (GMPF), an umbrella body of people dependent on the industry.

GMPF president Puti Gaonkar said the march was peaceful as the mining dependents gathered in the state capital only to send across a message to the governments ( and the Centre) that their patience is running out.

Since the last three years, the people whose livelihood depends on the mining activities, have been observing February 7 as a "black day", he said.

The GMPF has tried all possible options to ensure the resumption of the mining industry, but nothing seems to be working, Gaonkar said.

"We approached everyone, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah, but there is no solution as of now," he said.

The state is also facing a tough time as its revenues have plummeted due to the closure of the mining industry, he said.

Gaonkar claimed around three lakh people are dependent on the industry and they have been seeking immediate resumption of the iron ore extraction operations in the state.

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First Published: Mon, February 08 2021. 13:53 IST