People's Democracy

(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)


Vol. XXXIV

No. 30

July 25, 2010

 

Nationalise Iron Ore Mines: CITU

 

THROUGH a statement issued from New Delhi, July 19, by its president A K Padmanabhan, the Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU) has pointed out that the disquieting political developments in Karnataka have brought the issue of illegal mining and export of iron ore to the fore. This problem is not confined to Karnataka but widespread in the states of Andhra Pradesh, Orissa, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand and Goa. Powerful mafia groups engaged in illegal mining are operating across states, looting mineral resources in the most reckless manner and causing the losses of thousands of crores to the state exchequer. By penetrating the state governments and political parties, these mining mafia groups are also subverting the democratic process and making a mockery of public administration and law enforcement. According to the CITU, these entities cannot be checked by piecemeal measures initiated by individual state governments; rather the issue has to be seen as a national problem demanding a solution at the national level.

 

The CITU has therefore demanded that the central government immediately announce a ban on iron ore exports. It has also demanded that the mines run by the likes of the Reddy brothers, which are flouting all norms and regulations, should be nationalised. State governments should be asked to prepare lists of private mines which are carrying out illegal mining and exports. The CITUís point is that the National Mineral Development Corporation Ltd (NMDC) should take over those mines, curb illegalities and run them in a manner suitable for national development. (INN)