Mining in Goa: State hopes Centre will amend laws for resumption of activity
By Financial Experess 24-Jun-2019
Though the power to amend the Act lies with the Centre, sources said it is still awaiting the Supreme Court’s decision pertaining to the title and duration of mining leases granted. The Centre reckons until a decision on the matter is arrived at by the apex court, the title issue will not get resolved.
“It is submitted that pending adjudication of the legal issues in the present appeal, there will always remain an inherent legal uncertainty on the title rights of the mines, if granted afresh, as per the directions passed by the Supreme Court in Goa Foundation Cases, as the original title of mines is still under litigation,” the Union mines ministry said in the interlocutory application, seeking an early hearing.
Goa’s export-oriented mining sector is unique. Mining concessions in the state were granted much before of its liberation from the Portuguese rule in 1961. These concessions were converted into mining leases through the amendment to the Abolition Act, 1987.
The state government is of the opinion these leases should be deemed to have been granted in 1987 and have a tenure of 50 years, like any other leases under the amended MMDR Act, 2015.
It suggested an insertion in the Abolition Act which reads, “Every mining concession which was abolished, and has been deemed to be a mining lease and which had applied for and had been granted renewal, shall extend and be deemed to have granted for a period of 50 years”.
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