After the environment ministry’s Forest Advisory Committee (FAC) reportedly refused approval to bauxite mining for Vedanta Resources, the Orissa government is planning to go all-out to save the project in the state.
While Orissa Chief Minister Navin Pathaik will meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Monday to discuss the issue, state forest secretary U.N. Bahara will on Tuesday make a presentation in the ministry on the Saxena panel report.
The panel had submitted a report to Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh last Monday accusing the Orissa government of issuing fake certificates of consent from gram sabhas to seek environment clearance.
The FAC saw the report and is said to have found the state government guilty of violating the in-principle approval given to Orissa Mining Corporation for bauxite mining in 2008.
The recommendations of the committee will be submitted to the ministry on Monday.
In a last-ditch effort to save Vedanta refinery, to which the bauxite will be eventually provided, Patnaik is likely to point at the ministry’s “double standards” when he meets Singh. Environment clearance was give to Polavaram Dam in Andhra Pradesh “without mandatory public hearing”. “It shows double standards of the (environment) ministry,” A.S. Sethi, leader of Biju Janata Dal in Lok Sabha said on Thursday.
On the presentation to the environment ministry, Bahara told HT, “We have a lot of reservations on the findings of the report and it will detailed to the ministry.”