In 2008, to supply the bauxite ore mined by the APMDC in Vizag Agency tracts.
Visakhapatnam: In a twist to the tale, social and tribal welfare minister Ravela Krishna Babu had dropped enough indications that the state government has not totally backtracked on the contentious bauxite mining and has kept all options open.
In a recent visit to Vizag Agency, the minister said the state government will do bauxite mining in Vizag Agency only with the consent of tribals. He also reminded that the state government didn’t cancel GO No. 97.
The state government is yet to cancel the GO it had issued in November last, which facilitates bauxite mining, and it adds credence to the government’s intention to go ahead with mining which is being opposed by the locals. The TD government had only said the GO will be kept in abeyance, instead of revoking it after widespread criticism and the locals also are ready for a fresh round of stir.
The state government had only cancelled the MoUs the then YS Rajasekhar Reddy led government signed with private companies on the supply of mined bauxite ore by state-run mining agency AP Mineral Development Corporation (APMDC).
The GO has only been kept in abeyance, but not cancelled. Inducting YSRC MLA from Araku, Kidari Sarveswar Rao, into the party has also been viewed as an attempt to placate the tribal forces that have been opposing bauxite mining through him.
"If the state government is really committed to withdrawing the bauxite mining decision, it should cancel the G O. Mere cancelling the MoUs will not serve the purpose. MoUs can be freshly signed by other companies. The GO should be cancelled and the state government should make a statement that it will not pursue mining in the future," said tribal rights activist G. Srinivas.
The MoUs that were cancelled were signed with Jindal South West Ltd (JSW) in 2005 and Anrak Ltd. In 2008, to supply the bauxite ore mined by the APMDC in Vizag Agency tracts. Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG), in its latest report, found fault with the MoUs which it felt were unfavourable to the state government.
Interestingly the present state government, in its GOs 44, 45 issued on April 7, 2016, by the industries department, cancelling the MoUs , too found fault with the then government and cancelled them stating that the agreements were not favourable to the Corporation.