Goa

Goa to approach NGT to seek exemption from ban on sand mining

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Goa government has decided to approach the National Green Tribunal (NGT) to plead to exempt the state from the ban on sand mining.

“Sand mining in Goa is undertaken by manual method, whereas in most of the other states, it (sand mining) is done by use of heavy machinery and on dry river beds on large scale,” Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar told the Legislative Assembly today.

The state will move the NGT in the first week of November, Parrikar told the House, responding to a Calling Attention Motion moved to point out the crisis in the construction industry due to scarcity of sand.

Parrikar said if sand is not extracted, the rivers would silt flooding the villages located on their banks.

BJP legislators Michael Lobo and Dr Pramod Sawant had moved the Calling Attention Motion on the floor of the House today claiming that ban on extraction of sand and other minerals like bricks and stones has crippled the construction activity.

Responding to it, Parrikar said the NGT over reached its mandate which has resulted in black marketing and rise of sand prices.

He said the House was unanimous that “this kind of sudden order should not be issued by NGT without hearing the state.”

The state government had in the past represented itself before the NGT and it was apparently sympathetic towards this matter, he said.

While the motion claimed that all other minor minerals including sand have gone scarce, Parrikar said, “except sand, there is no shortage of other minor minerals.”

Courtesy : BS

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