Current Affairs

Has Parrikar been silenced by the Mining Lobby?

Not wanting to court controversy over naming any politician or letting the illegal mining issue get wrangled into a war of words between the ruling and opposition party; instead wanting the report to speak for itself, Manohar Parrikar, Opposition Leader has decided to not to indulge in the act of naming any Ministers or Members of the Legislative Assembly (MLAs) in the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) report which is to be presented in the house in the upcoming assembly session.

However, this move on Parrikar’s part is being seen as highly questionable, because a PAC’s  main agenda is to scrutinize government related accounts to see if the government ministries and bodies have been function according to the set agenda and that tax-payers money are not being frivolously utilized and scams are brought to the notice of the government and people.

While GoaChronicle.com could not speak to Manohar Parrikar as his phone was not reachable, when we spoke to Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) High Command on these new developments, Arti Mehra, national secretary & Goa In-Charge said, “Our demands on the illegal mining issue have not changed and we are not going to relent on this issue. However, it is important for the PAC report to not have any political mileage which will be taken by the Congress-led government whose ministers are the major benefactors in the illegal mining scam. Therefore, we decided to let the report speak for itself.  The report is self-explanatory and while showcase the illegalities.”

This change in BJP strategy has coming as a surprise to many NGOs who thought the Opposition party will come out with the names of the politicians involved in illegal mining as a few days back Manohar Parrikar had names ministers such as Vishwajeet Rane and Joaquim Alemao and even demanded a Central Bureau of Investigations (CBI) probe into the illegal mining scam. One environmental activist, commented, “Parrikar has always worked in conjunction with Digambar Kamat. He has his allegiance to mining companies. His change in stance seems to be more driven by the need to not antagonize the mining lobby too much or he will lose their support in the coming elections”.

While some opine that maybe allegations made on the PAC report by Congress ministers that it is biased, maybe also be the reason why he would not want to name any ministers but the let report talk for itself; but in lies the contradiction, if Parrikar is aware of the illegalities and the ministers or MLAs involvement; then it is important for him to make the people aware of it.
In our recent expose, we have shown how the BJP has benefitted from political donations from Sesa Goa, a mining company currently under focus on account of the illegal mining scam expose.

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