K’taka mining dependents to stage protest at Jantar Mantar on Tuesday


Team Udayavani, Apr 16, 2019, 10:22 AM IST

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Bengaluru/ New Delhi: Mining dependents of Karnataka will stage a protest here at Jantar Mantar on Tuesday to press for non-discriminatory practices in iron ore trade in the state and an immediate action by the Centre to improve their livelihoods, an industry association said.

The development follows mining dependents in the state requesting the Supreme Court-appointed panel to allow free iron ore trade in the state.

“Around 600 Karnataka mining dependents from Bellary, Hospet, Chitradurga districts and surrounding mining belts to protest at Jantar Mantar, Delhi, on April 16, 2019, under the banner of Karnataka Gani Avalambithara Vedike (KGAV),” KGAV, which represents mining dependents, said in a statement.

Around 2 lakh mining dependents, it said, have sought the immediate action by the Centre in rescuing their livelihoods “from the prejudiced policies prevailing only in Karnataka”, the statement said.

After mining was banned in Karnataka, scores of people dependant on iron ore mining industry including truckers and small scale industries, were hit as it resulted in job loss and extreme cases of poverty, it had earlier said.

The Supreme Court later allowed mining with production limits and other restrictions. It also appointed a Central Empowered Committee (CEC) to look into issues related to iron ore mining in Karnataka.

“Why only Karnataka iron ore industry is being subjected to such highly prejudiced treatment in terms of discriminatory policies, without paying any heed to the survival of lakhs of mining dependents?” KGAV spokesperson Rajakumar S questioned.

The government, he said, should have fair trade practices equally across the country, including Karnataka.

The livelihood of mining dependents became highly uncertain even after the Supreme Court permitted to start mining, as production cap, e-auction and lots of other restrictions lowered the mining capacity, the KGAV noted.

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