ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Lack of Clarity and Vision in New Mines and Minerals Act

Much has been claimed on behalf of the Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) Amendment Act that has been enacted by Parliament, but the legislation has introduced a watered-down version of auctions, has many exceptions to legalise the old first-cum-firstserve approach, and ignores previous Supreme Court rulings on measures to ensure sustainable development.

With a brute majority in the Lok Sabha and being able to manipulate regional parties to lend it support in the Rajya Sabha, the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government has succeeded in converting a hastily issued ordinance on mines into a full-fledged law.

The Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) Amendment Act (MMDRAA), 2015, which amended the parent Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) Act (MMDRA) of 1957, shows how the government has not only shunned an opportunity to impart clarity and vision to an otherwise blurred mineral policy but also created considerable scope for opacity and rentseeking in tapping the mineral wealth of the country.

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