Orissa Congress urges Sonia to check plundering of minerals

Published: Sunday, November 12, 2006, 21:13 [IST]
 

Bhubaneswar, Nov 12 (UNI) Congress MLA Umesh Swain has urged party president Sonia Gandhi to restrict the Orissa government on export of minerals and debar the captive lease system.

Mr Swain in a letter to Ms Gandhi said, minerals in the state were being exported mindlessly by the state government, which had signed several MoUs to allow the business houses to export minerals.

Alleging that the leaders in power had garnered huge amounts from the export and would use the same against the opposition Congress in the elections, Mr Swain said. If the ruling BJD-BJP government allows the present rate of export to continue in the state, then the state would be left with no iron ore in the next 20 years and chrome ores in seven years.

Stating that the excavation of the minerals would pose a serious threat to the ecology, Mr Swain said the state government had signed MoUs with various MNC's to set up huge Alumina Refinery complexes, which would destroy the forest cover and displace lakhs of tribals.

He also alleged that the bauxite ores were being provided to the companies almost free of cost sacrificing the interests of the state.

Ms Swain had also urged Ms Gandhi to ensure that no private person is allowed to hold the captive mining lease and exploitation of minerals by restricting export to the barest minimum which would generate additional resources to the tune of Rs 10,000 crores per annum.

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