In a move to recover the gains made from alleged illegal mining, the Goa's directorate of mines and geology has issued a Rs 97.48-crore demand notice to Vedanta towards non-payment of royalty for the financial years 2011 to 2013.
The company is alleged to have illegally mined iron ore to the tune of 20,76,746 tonne during this period, according to the directorate of mines and geology (DMG).
The notice, issued today by the DMG, Prasanna Acharya, directs Vedanta to pay the principal royalty amount of Rs 54.48 crore within 14 days and the interest of Rs 43.03 crore in the next seven days. The total adds up to Rs 97.48 crore.
A query sent to the Vedanta spokeman seeking comments was yet to be responded.
Goa had appointed a team of chartered accountants to go into the details of royalty evasion by various miners after being pointed out by MB Shah committee report, which was submitted to the Supreme Court in 2012, claimed that the state saw illegal mining to the tune of Rs 35,000 crore.
The notice mentions that "mere collection of dues will not absolve the company from any civil or criminal action." The royalty evasion has been pointed out to total nine iron ore leases of Vedanta in the tiny tourist state.
"The audit report prepared by the chartered accountants was summarised by the mining audit committee, which has made several observations, including payment of royalty by you on dry metric tonne basis instead of the wet metric tonne basis in respect of the above-mentioned leases," the notice, copy of which is with
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