Chief Minister Digambar Kamat informed the Goa Legislative Assembly on Tuesday that as many as 17 mines are operating within a radius of 200 meters from the Selaulim water reservoir and another two within 500 meters from it.
Selaulim with its storage capacity of 234.36 million cubic meters, supplies water to nearly 80 per cent of the State’s population that includes the entire South Goa district and pockets of North Goa.
The Chief Minister’s disclosure was made while replying to a question tabled by Vasudev Meng Gaonkar who represents the Sanguem constituency where the dam is situated.
The chief minister also admitted that of these 19 mines, as many as nine do not have the mandatory environmental clearance.
‘Significantly, while replying to another question, the Chief Minister conceded that no study has been undertaken to assess the impact of the mining activity on the water in the reservoir.
This despite the fact that the Goa Legislative Assembly’s ad-hoc committee on forests had strongly recommended monitoring the mining activity in the vicinity of the dam to ensure that rejects do not flow into the reservoir.