In a major set back for the iron ore mining industry, the Supreme Court appointed expert committee has opined that only 20 million tons of the metal ore should be allowed to be mined in Goa, as against the current extraction of 53 million tons.
The committee, which met yesterday, has suggested mining of 20 million tons of iron ore, though the stakeholders had demanded the capping to be between 45 and 50 million tons. The capping would be implemented only after Supreme Court vacates its current ban on the exports imposed owing to the allegations of illegal mining.
The committee members, including ecologist Dr C R Babu, geologist Dr S C Dhiman, mineralogist Prof B K Mishra, forest officer S Parmeshwarappa and Goa secretary Parimal Rai met various government officials yesterday, before deciding on the figure.
The six-member committee will submit its report to the apex court by February 15.
Sources said the committee has decided the capping considering the ore resources available in the state and its carrying capacity, keeping in mind the principles of sustainable development and inter-generational equity and all other relevant factors.