Centre blames States for delay in mining clearances

Bhubaneswar: The Central government today passed the buck on to the State governments saying the delay in getting forest and environment clearances stems from the delay in filing of application by States.

At a workshop in Bhubaneswar today, IG of Union Forest and Environment ministry Deepak Kumar Sinha said that State governments are not providing the data and facts in a proper manner and at an appropriate time. Despite the streamlining of the process of change in land use pattern, State governments are unable to take full advantage of it.

“We have simplified the process. We are trying to bring down the number of days taken in sanctioning the cases. But in most of the cases, the delay is at the state level because we are not receiving the proposal in the proper format. If it is received, it is not complete in all respect. That is the cause of the delay,” said Deepak Kumar Sinha.

The State government, however, has dismissed the charge saying even proposals sent three years back are yet to receive the clearances from the Union ministry.

“We generally send our proposals in a proper manner. The ministry should communicate to us if any proposal is lacking any information sought by them. We are always striving to submit the proposals in the prescribed format,” said Odisha Mines minister Prafulla Mallick.

Discussions were held at the workshop to expedite mining in Odisha as well as in other States. The workshop laid emphasis on protection of environment along with the socio-economic development of the mining-affected areas. The workshop also discussed various problems faced by the lease holders.

“We need to understand what is the right solution which can address the concerns of the community, the legislation and the concerns of the industry. We also need to see how the cost of the industry is being addressed. Emphasis is being laid on ease of doing business and th same amount of stress should be put on the cost of business because if the industry is not competitive, investors will not come,” said MD of Tata Steel TV Narendran.

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