Wednesday, October 27, 2010

In Bicholim taluka Naveli revolts against mining industry, nine women arrested

Today is yet another historic day in the life of Goa; yet another village revolted against mining industry. This time it is Naveli in Bicholim taluka in North Goa. At around 9.00 am women of the village stopped mining transport carrying overloaded trucks. Villagers saw the records of the trucks and they found that each truck was carrying 19 tonnes of iron ore from nearby mine. Legally they are supposed to carry only 10 tonnes of ore. The cost of each tonne iron ore is Rs. 5000/- in international market.

Villagers are upset because the mining company - Dempos Mining corporation- owned by Vedanta since June 2009, has caused siltation of their paddy fields. Villagers are demanding that their paddy field be cleaned of all the mining silt. Vedanta instead of cleaning their paddy field are offering to pay compensation. Villagers are refusing compensation. This fight has widened as fight against capitalism that is administered by clique of Saraswat Brahmins with villagers refusing compensation.

Due to mining silt villagers were not able to cultivate their paddy fields for two years. Goa government has decided to take over the agricultural lands if they remain uncultivated for three years. This year if villagers do not cultivate then they will loose their rights over land.

Women were arrested at around 12.30 pm and taken to Bicholim police station. There are various companies that are running the truck that were blocked today. One of them is PVG who is also running the barges with the blessings of top Congress (I) politicians including Goa Chief Minister Digambar Kamat who is holding Goa ransom to mining industry throughout his past 11 years tenure as mines minister of Goa.

After women were arrested by Police men came on the road and blocked transport for the rest of the day. Women were still with police custody till last report came in at 10.00 pm.

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