From Our Special Correspondent
Daijiworld Media Network - Panaji
Panaji, Jun 16: An international human right organization today demanded that all the environment impact assessment (EIA) reports of the iron ore mining firms should be reviewed as they are `full of false data.’
Human Rights Watch (HRW), an human right organization, in its report on the human rights violations in the mining areas, has said that existing environmental clearances of all mining projects should be reviewed.
“The EC is granted dependent on the EIAs which are prepared by the consultants. While repairing the approvals process for new mining operations, the central government should also review the data underpinning existing mine clearance,” reads the report `out of control: mining, regulatory failure and human rights in india’.
“If the EIA report underpinning a mine clearance is found to contain materially important false information, the government should use its power to revoke the clearance and shut down the mine, forcing it to reapply for environmental clearance,” the report adds.
Chris Albin-Lackey, senior researcher, Business and Human Rights Division, HRW, said that the mining is one industry which has incredible capacity of destruction. “Human right violations and environment damage is almost every day affair. People are seeing their livelihood threatened and land damaged.
The HRW, during their yearlong research in the mining affected states including Goa, Karnataka and Orissa, has noted that the human right violation issues are not related to the illegal mining but even genuine mines are violating it.
Ramesh Gawas, a local environmentalist, said that all EIAs are concealing the important information. “Facts are fragmented. Everything is far away from the reality,” he said, adding that the settlement areas are clandestinely hidden in the EIA reports.
He claimed that several decades after giving mining concessions (permission to mine), the government has not checked whether extraction is happening within the lease area or outside it.
Meenakshi Ganguly, South Asia director at HRW, claimed that the mining operations often cause immense destruction when government does not exercise proper oversight.
The HRW has decided to submit this report to the state and central government and follow its implementation.