Sawant hails SC ruling, says iron ore export to resume soon

Panaji, Jan 30 (PTI) Hailing the Supreme Court ruling allowing transportation of already mined iron ore in Goa, Chief Minister Pramod Sawant on Thursday said export of the mineral can resume within the next eight days.

In a major relief to mining firms, the apex court on Thursday modified its earlier order and permitted transportation of validly mined iron ore lying unused at various sites in the state within a period of six months.

The mining industry in Goa came to a standstill after the Supreme Court quashed 88 mining leases in February 2018.

The apex court had also banned transportation of the ore which has piled up at various points.

Reacting to the SC judgment, Sawant told reporters here the state government will facilitate all formalities required to resume iron ore transportation and export.

He said more than nine million metric tons of iron ore, on which royalty has been paid, is lying at various mining sites across the State.

The SC allowed transport of validity mined ore from mines if they have paid royalty to government authorities.

A bench headed by Chief Justice S A Bobde delivered the judgment on a plea by mining firm Chowgule and Company Pvt Ltd.

Sawant termed the verdict as positive and said all formalities required to transport and export the ore have to be completed within the next six months.

The chief minister said the government will not get any benefit in terms of revenue from the already mined stocks as royalty on them has been paid.

Post-verdict, mining companies will have to take back employees retrenched after the 2018 ruling, he said.

Also, so many staffers were paid half salary and they now will have to be given their dues, Sawant added. PTI RPS AP RSY RSY