Odisha govt admits illegal mining, Cong demands CBI probe
Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee(OPCC) president Niranjan Patnaik today asked Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik to come clean of the multi-crore mining scam in the state and order a CBI probe into the same.
Addressing newspersons here, Mr Patnaik said the CBI probe which the Congress had all along been demanding for was necessary following the admission of the state government that it had incurred a revenue loss of Rs 58,000 crore during the last ten years in illegal mining.
He said the revenue loss on account of illegal mining during the regime of Naveen Patnaik government would be much more than Rs 2.5 lakh crore and this could be exposed only by a CBI probe.
The Congress leader said CBI probe has been ordered in the mining scams in Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Goa but the Odisha government was unwilling for such a probe on the plea that the state vigilance was probing the matter.
The OPCC chief said some people had gone to the High Court, demanding a CBI probe, adding the hearing of the cases had already been completed but the Court was yet to deliver its judgment.
He alleged that the state government had been on the overdrive since the Shah Commission gave its report on the mining scam in Goa and had been issuing circulars, policy guidelines, closure notice to hoodwink the Shah Commission.
Mr Patnaik said just prior to the arrival of the Shah Commission team, the state government suddenly realised that there has been revenue loss of Rs 58,000 crore in the illegal mining in the state during the last ten years.
This was nothing but just to escape the wrath of the Shah Commission which was touring the mining areas to probe the mining scam, the Congress chief said and held Naveen Patnaik government solely responsible for the huge revenue loss.
He questioned what the government was doing during these last ten years and alleged that the state government by acts of omission and commissions allowed the huge revenue loss which could go up further once all the over production of the mining was taken into account.