Goa workers push prime minister for mining resumption

A delegation from the state of Goa met Indian prime minister Manmohan Singh and minister for mines Dinsha Patel in Parliament House earlier this week to push for a restart of mining in the state.

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Representatives of the Goa Workers Union and the Goa Mining People’s Front wanted to apprise the national authorities of the effects on workers and communities of the mining ban currently in force.

The Goa Workers Union is part of the All India Trade Union Congress (AITUC), the oldest trade union federation in India. The Goa Mining People’s Front represents people affected by the cessation of mining activity in the coastal state.

The delegation also included representatives of mining companies.

Mining in Goa was banned in October last year by the Supreme Court, after a petition was filed by environmental NGO, the Goa Foundation.

“The prime minister assured the delegation that his government is fully sympathetic towards the pain and suffering presently undergone by the mining dependants in Goa, and added that all efforts will be made by his government to ensure immediate resumption of mining operations in Goa,” the AITUC said in a statement on May 7.

It is estimated that more than 100,000 people have been affected by the mining ban.

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