Mining: Goa Lokayukta slams govt for no case against ex-CM yet 

PTI
Saturday, 30 May 2020

In January this year, the Goa Lokayukta had recommended to the state government that FIRs be registered through the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) against former CM Laxmikant Parsekar, the then Mines Secretary Pawan Kumar Sain and former Director of Mines and Geology Prasanna Acharya indicting them for illegal renewal of iron ore mining leases.

Panaji: The Goa Lokayukta has written a letter to the Governor expressing dissatisfaction over the BJP-led state government's failure in filing a case against former state chief minister Laxmikant Parsekar and two others, for alleged irregularities in the renewal of mining leases.
In the letter to Governor Satya Pal Malik, the Lokayukta invoked characters from the epic 'Mahabharata' saying that the government was "protecting the privileged and the powerful".
In January this year, the Goa Lokayukta had recommended to the state government that FIRs be registered through the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) against former CM Laxmikant Parsekar, the then Mines Secretary Pawan Kumar Sain and former Director of Mines and Geology Prasanna Acharya indicting them for illegal renewal of iron ore mining leases.
Lokayukta had alleged that there was "corruption and criminal conspiracy" in the renewal of the mining leases.
However, the Goa government has not filed FIRs against the trio despite indictment by Lokayukta.
The letter written by Goa Lokayukta, Justice (Rtd) P K Misra, says, "Only Dhritarashtra and or Gandhari would be unable to perceive anything sinister in what happened on January 12, 2015 and it seems there is no dearth of Dhritarashtras and or Gandharis these days in Mera Bharat Mahan."
"For that matter, it also seems there is no dearth of Shakunis in rendering appropriate advice. 'Putra moha' (love for the son) seems to have been substituted by 'party moha' (love for the party) or other kinds of 'moha' (greed) in the system of public administration and shouting from the rooftops regarding eradication of corruption, while paying only lip service, when the question of actual eradications crops up," Misra said.
The Lokayukta said that the non-acceptance of the report is on the "expected lines", given the usual attitude of "protecting the privileged and the powerful", the 'political compulsion' and the tendency to prejudge matters without discerning the relevant materials in their proper perspective.
In the strongly-worded letter, the Lokayukta has said, "The institution is not satisfied with the reasons given in either of the ATRs, submitted by Chief Minister and Governor, and in view of the importance of the question involved, the case deserves that a special report under Section 16(3) is required to be made."
Both the ATRs were apparently based on the opinion of the Advocate General and "other visible or invisible" set of advisers, are in similar vein, it said.
"The opinion of the learned Advocate General seems to be based on half-baked ideas, incomplete and cursory reading of the Goa Lokayukta Act," he said further.
The Lokayukta said that it has not referred to hasty clearance of renewals of 88 leases, but had considered renewals of leases made between January 5 and 12, 2015.
"If the above acts were not abuse of position, then God only knows the meaning of such expression. And God alone can Save the State," he remarked.
The Lokayukta has said that personal honesty of an individual, though laudable, is not enough.
"Maintaining institutional integrity is the hallmark of a good administrator and the most basic foundation of ideal public administration," he said.

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