Guna MP Jyotiraditya Scindia on Thursday staged a five-hour long dharna at court road in Shivpuri to mount pressure on the State government to allow mining activities around the sanctuary area, which has since been banned.
A large number of party workers, people associated with mining business including women participated in the dharna.
Addressing the gathering, Scindia announced to take the fight to street if the State government failed to redress the grievances of those affected by the ban on mining the periphery of the sanctuary area within 2 months. Characteristically dharna was shorn off political color and being represented by people actually involved with mining activities including laborers, contractors, skilled workers, vehicle drivers and helpers.
The Congress leader cautioned the Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan to refrain from misguiding the people and press. In an emotional speech he urged the BJP leaders to rise above party politics and address the issue on priority basis. Scindia said restarting of the mining activities will provide re-employment and sustain the livelihood of over 30,000 people.
Scindia criticised Chouhan in particular for trying to take credit of welfare works initiated and executed by him. The BJP government appeared insensitive in resolving the mining issue for all these years, he said.
He said the state government did not take initiatives to open five mines despite sanction by empowered committee appointed by apex court. Rs 2.77 crore compensation for towards afforestation has already been deposited by the previous Congress government, he said. Now the State government has to deposit compensation for 3 more mines. An empowered committee had allowed opening of 8 mines falling under the 'greater than 5 km periphery' of the national park here.
Scinia rubbished the reported remarks of Chouhan that Rs 70 lakh compensation for 4 hectare mining land was too high and he would urge the Union government for reduction. If Chouhan had discussed the matter with me I would have arranged funds for paying compensation, Scindia said.
He also criticised the State government saying that it tried to take credit for welfare schemes such as national rural employment guarantee scheme, road projects and Aaganwadi national rural health mission which in fact were funded by the Union government with marginal contribution from the State.
Following closure of mines in 1990 people in large number from villages had migrated to Shivpuri. Due to unemployment a large number of outsiders indulged in anti-social activities. Late Madhavrao Scindia had led a delegation of mine workers to former Prime Minister H D Devegowda in 1991 in Delhi. Following Devegowda's directives mining activities had resumed during the Congress regime here and but were later banned.