Goa: Environmental groups call on political parties to protect generational resource inheritance

The GMM manifesto aims to protect natural resources and wealth for future generations in an economically beneficial manner

The Goenchi Mati Movement (GMM)

The Goenchi Mati Movement (GMM) asked all Goan political parties and Goans to support its Manifesto for fair mining following Chief Minister Pramod Sawant’s announcement about the restart of iron ore mining, said a press release on December 6, 2020.

The GMM, a campaign started by the Goa Foundation in the interest of protecting the state’s mining rights, asked the state government to implement a few simple Constitutional principles in mineral resource management.

“The Movement requests all people-friendly political parties to support and to incorporate the Goenchi Mati Manifesto into their party platforms. We have developed a win-win solution to a very vexed issue (mining) that is of great importance and concern to voters,” they said.

The manifesto works on the Intergenerational Equity (IE) principle, which states that the current generation should ensure that future generations inherit at least as much as previous ones. The principle provides an economically beneficial plan on mining and suggests an interim plan for mining dependents. Further, it places a priority for dump mining and land restoration over fresh mining while reflecting concerns of mining affected.

“We propose a model for mining that honours our constitution and protects the rights of children and of future generations of Goa. It also dramatically reduces the potential for looting that is associated with mining, which has caused tremendous environmental, economic and social damage in Goa. We call on all political parties and all independent MLAs to explicitly support our Manifesto,” said member of the GMM Andrea Rodericks.

According to members, the proposed manifesto produces a fair outcome for all mining stakeholders by ensuring that mining dependent, mining affected, the Government of Goa, the people of Goa and future citizens will all benefit while miners receive up to 20 percent return and no further.

“Supporting the manifesto is a critical step in changing the trajectory of Goa’s society and economy. Goa has the opportunity to be a beacon of hope in a dark world. I hope Goans from all walks of life, especially the mining dependent, the mining affected, the business community, and anyone who cares about what is right show leadership and courage and publicly support our manifesto,” said another member Rahul Basu.

The manifesto, developed in 2016, works on the basis of six Goenchi Mati Principles:

1.       The people of Goa, own the mineral in common with the state government as a trustee of natural resources for people and future generations (Public Trust Doctrine).

2.       Minerals are inherited wealth that people – as custodians – must pass on to future generations (Intergenerational Equity).

3.       The mining and sale of mineral resources should ensure zero loss – capture of full economic rent (sale price minus cost of extraction, cost including reasonable profit for miner).

4.       All receipts must be saved in the Goenchi Mati Permanent Fund, owned by Goans. The Supreme Court has ordered the creation of a Permanent Fund for Goan iron ore and already Rs. 94 crores is deposited.

5.       Any real income (after inflation) from the Goenchi Mati Permanent Fund must be distributed to all as a right of ownership, a Citizen’s Dividend.

6.       Goans will participate in the transparent implementation of these principles.


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