It's thick western ghats forest in Cavrem in South Goa currently under eyes of storm. Goa State Pollution Control Board issued notification calling for Public Hearing to start mining of Hill for Iron Ore and Manganese to be held on April 11, 2023.
The lush green forest will get razed down if the mining proposal gets clearance. 7,02,000 square meters of mountainous land constitute survey no.19 of the Cavrem village on Quepem taluka.
The Forest land hasn't been diverted for mining purpose as per the information presented in EIA Study of the project.
Significant feature of this mountain in Cavrem is that Community has staked claims for community Forest Rights that are mysteriously parked in Deputy Collector's office in Quepem for more than half a decade.
Mountain is sacred for the Tribal people of Cavrem just like Niyamgiri in Orissa. If mountain is razed then community gets razed too.
Though EIA documents doesn't mention but investigations by Villagers indicates that corporate behind pushing to start mining of this mountain is same that devastated several other mountains in Goa connected with Fomentos as their Agents.
Fomentos has gruesome records of environmental damage and Human Rights violations though administration of repressive tactics against communities resisting mining industry in Goa.
Colomba village nearby to Cavrem is one of the best examples of their beastly deeds while running Hiralal Khodidas mining lease there.
Cavrem village is predominantly Tribal occupied village and has staked claims over Forest to manage it in entirety. Cavrem is one of the few Villages in Goa to achieve this feat.
Company claims it will dig 14 meters deep to extract and export purpose. It is the Villagers that stand to loose. "This mountain is very important to us. If it is mined then villagers will have go away". They will add to the pull of ecological refugees.
Cavrem has strong agitational history including resistence to mining. In December 2007 after GAKUVED protest in Quepem attacked three village Mines and forced shut down temporarily thereby grabbing media headlines. This puts the village in strong position to win this battle too. For this we need to connect with the struggle for the kinds of developmental violence it promises to unleash is transcends village boundary into wider terrains of Goa, India and beyond.
Cavrem has opened up unique opportunity yet again to connect past with the present in relation to mining dynamics in all its dimensions.
We invite you in this journey of reflective action as we move step by step towards expression and healing. To support cavrem Villagers in their current combat and amplify the local voice and articulate further. We at this blog are attempting exactly this. Do get involve!
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