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Withdraw cases against anti-mining activists: Goa church

October 17, 2012 11:08 IST

The Goa church has demanded that the government withdraw all the criminal cases filed against anti-illegal mining activists across these years as their stand is vindicated after the tabling of the Justice M B Shah commission report.

The Council for Social Justice and Peace, a wing of Goa church, has also expressed its worry about the people dependent on mining who are facing huge financial debts and the threat of losing everything due to the current crisis impending over the trade.

The Supreme Court in its recent verdict halted transportation and extraction of iron ore in Goa, pending report from the centrally empowered committee which will probe into the illegal mining scenario in the state following Shah Commission's findings.

CSJP executive secretary Fr Savio Fernandes has said that being sympathetic to the cause of innocent victims of mining crisis, the Council also expresses its concern over the number of criminal cases by the government and the mining lobby -- pending in various courts -- in a bid to silence innocent locals who dared protest against the violation of their human rights by the mining industry.

"While the Government considers proposals for compensating those who have lost their livelihoods due to the ban on mining, the Council demands that all pending criminal

cases against anti-mining activists be withdrawn as their stand against the excesses and illegalities in mining is now established by the Shah Commission report and found reasonable. This is reflected in the ban imposed by the Supreme Court," he added.

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