Illegal mining; Santosh Hegde drops bomb on Goa scam

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Santosh Hegde
Panaji, Sept 27: Santosh Hegde, former Karnataka Lokayukta Justice has asked the Goa government to investigate into the matter over allowing export of illegal iron ore from neighbouring states through its ports.

According to Hegde, almost 45 lakh tonne of iron ore was traded through Mormugao Port Trust (MPT), South Goa.

"The Ore which was being brought under pretext of consumption for local units was being exported through the port illegally," he claimed.

He further said that the illegal export could not have happened without the help of local people.

"This cannot happen innocently. This has been done in collusion with the locals. Its for the Goa government to investigate into who were these people who allowed the ore to be exported," said Hegde adding that the Karnataka Lokayukta was clueless if any Goan officer was involved in illegalities.

He also said that it was obvious that illegal exports were happening from the fact that ore of 62-64 Degree Ferrous content was being exported from Goan ports.

"Goa does not have such a high grade ore. So the question is from where the ore has come, and we say that it has come from Karnataka," said Hegde.

"Its not difficult for Goa to investigate into the illegalities as there are proper permits issued while ore is brought in from across the border. Every lot of ore brought in has certain identification," he said.

Justice Santosh Hegde's report on illegal mining indicted the then Chief Minister of Karnataka, BS Yeddyurappa and many others of their involvement in corrupt practices.

"Its not difficult for Goa to investigate into the illegalities as there are proper permits issued while ore is brought in from across the border. Every lot of ore brought in has certain identification," he said.

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