Describing the proposed mining policy that allows for export of iron ore as "shortsighted and harmful," the CPI-M on Saturday asked the government not to approve it, as it would rob the country of its resources.
Reacting to the clearance given to the new policy by a group of ministers, the party Polit Bureau said: "Indiscriminate exports of iron ore and other mineral resources will denude India of its natural resources." It demanded that the mining policy should "not be approved by the Union cabinet and be placed before parliament for further discussion." The CPI-M also demanded tabling of the report of the Standing Committee on Special Economic Zones (SEZ) in Parliament for a debate, which, it said, could be the basis for bringing about changes in the SEZ Act and rules.
Noting that the Parliamentary panel had made several recommendations and suggested amendments to the law, the party said: "In view of the widespread objections and apprehensions about the existing Act and rules, it is incumbent upon the government to ensure a full discussion on the report in the forthcoming session of Parliament".
The issues, the CPI-M said, were important as they concerned protecting the interests of farmers, food security, changing the Land Acquisition Act, setting a proper ceiling on land allotted for different categories of SEZs, ending the "unjustifiable" tax sops and protecting the interests of labour within the SEZs.