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BJP manifesto promises Goa Lokayukta within 100 days

Source : IANS
Last Updated: Sun, Feb 19, 2012 10:34 hrs
BJP on the move as Congress-led coalition flounders

Panaji: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) will institute a Lokayukta in Goa within 100 days of coming to power, according to the party's poll manifesto released on Sunday.

Former chief minister Manohar Parrikar told reporters during the release function that all illegal mining cases would be referred to the authority.

He said all those facing allegations of illegal mining right from the chief minister's office down to the bureaucracy will be tried by the Lokayukta.

"All illegal mining cases will go to the Lokayukta. Government documentation available will be enough to prosecute them," Parrikar said.

The BJP has charged the Digambar Kamat-led government of presiding over a Rs.25,000 crore illegal mining scam and have accused several cabinet ministers of being involved in illegal mining.

In its manifesto, which was released by BJP MP Ravi Shankar Prasad Sunday, the party has also called for regulation of illegal mining.

"Legal mining needs to be regulated. Dedicated corridors to be developed with two and a half years to ensure safer and trouble free transportation. 60 per cent of royalty received by government on mining will be used for infra structure, developmental projects, agricultural and environmental revitalisation in the areas affected by mining," the manifesto promises.

Parrikar also said the party would impose an environment cess on mining as well as lobby with the central government to increase the royalty share of the Goa government, which currently earns Rs.1,200 crore in the form of royalty for 51 million tonnes of iron ore exported annually from Goa's Mormugao Port Trust (MPT).

Illegal mining has been a major issue in Goa over the last few years with civil society groups as well as the opposition taking on the Congress-led coalition government for not acting against the malaise.

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