Cabinet to consider Lokayukta report soon

Official sources said an executive summary of the report, besides the action that could be taken, will be placed before the Cabinet at its next meeting.

The suggestions made by the Jairaj panel will be presented in about 10 pages to the Cabinet. The date for holding the next Cabinet meeting is yet to be fixed. The Lokayukta report has not yet been placed before the Cabinet. Some Congress leaders are pressuring the Centre to establish a special investigation team (SIT) to probe the scam. The SIT should have officials of key departments of State as well as Centre, they say.

But the State may not be in favour of an SIT, as the Lokayukta report has already specified the action to be taken in many cases. As the recommendations are specific in nature and many departments have already begun taking action, one more agency to investigate is not required, is the argument of officials.

For example, the Mines and Geology department has recommended to the Government to issue closure notice to 24 lease holders/mining firms as they have been indicted in the mining report. The Forest department has already suspended 29 officials.

Official sources said the firms which face cancellation of lease are: J M Vrushabhendraiah, Trident Minerals, S L Jairam, S B Minerals, Shaisab, Veeyam, K M Parvathamma, Mansoor Ahmed, MBT, Hind Traders, Rajpur Mines LMC, S B Minerals, DMS, N Rathnaiah, Adarsha, Sparkline, R M Poal, Shiva Vilas, Karthikeshwara, Mata, BRY Singh, AMC and Janthakal (the last three mines are awaiting renewal of lease licence). Mata Minerals is in Tumkur, while the rest are in Bellary.

The Lokayukta report has stated that some of these lease holders/firms had business ‘deals’ with Obulapuram Mining Company owned by Janardhana Reddy.

The CEC-appointed team of officials has completed surveying 124 mining lease areas in Bellary and 24 in Chitradurga districts. The survey to fix the boundaries is on, in Tumkur district. The panel is not appointed to look into the boundary issue between Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka. The team comprising eight to 10 officers, is carrying out the survey work. It will be submitting its report to the CEC, as per the Supreme Court direction, official sources said.

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