New Delhi, Feb 10:
The much awaited Justice MB Shah Commission report on the Odisha mining scam was presented in the Rajya Sabha today. The contents of the report corroborated extracts from the report quoted by various media organisations, including leading news portal gulail.com.
Just as the extracts had reported, the Commission has put the loss due to illegal mining in the state from 2008 to 2011 at a whopping Rs 59, 200 crores.
In the first part of the five-volume report, the Commission has recommended that the amount be recovered from the guilty miners “by finalising the proceedings on the basis of the notices as early as possible” and used for development of Keonjhar and Sundargarh districts of the state which are badly affected by illegal mining.
“This at least can remove the poverty of tribals, who are affected or whose lands are used for mining purpose,” the report said, adding that mining operations led to displacement of tribals and forced them to stay in “pathetic and miserable conditions”.
Most of the mining activities in the mineral-rich state were carried out in gross disregard of rules, regulations and environmental norms, the report said adding the government was rendered ‘helpless’ by the mining mafia. “During this period, there was a collapse of government machinery, which looked to be ineffective and helpless in front of mining mafia, persons in political life, mighty lessees and some corrupt officials,” the report said.
“Since there is involvement of mighty lessees, big traders of state and outside state, political entities, officers at higher rank, it will not be possible by state police to find the facts and realities and there would be no justice done for quantum of illegalities took place,” it said recommending a CBI probe into the issue.