The illegal mining cases have revealed some interesting patterns in Karnataka politics. The mineral-rich state has faced problems regarding mining for years. These mining cases go back to 2006. The Lokayukta report named those involved in the 3000 crore rupees scam. Yeddyurappa was eventually asked to step down because of his involvement in the scam. There is currently a probe into 76 mining scams around the state, three of which pertain to Andhra Pradesh.
The probe into illegal mining
Earlier in January, the task of investigating the scams was handed over to the SIT. This was because the CBI claimed there wasn’t enough evidence regarding the scams. 73 cases are regarding ore export from Blelekeri and the new Mangalore ports. In total, the 76 companies have allegedly shipped 2.86 crore tonnes of iron extracted around Karnataka. The shipments seem to have taken place between 2006 and 2010. Companies involved include Adani Enterprises, Baldota Group’s MSPL among others.
The investigation by the CBI proved insufficient, which is why the SIT has been called in. The CBI’s closure reports cited lack of evidence. Therefore a fresh probe was necessary. The probe was begun when it was suggested that different ministers also had a hand in the illegal mining. The SIT in the light of these events has been granted a year to bring those involved to trial.
Anand Singh a BJP MLA from Bellary, one of the iron ore districts has joined Congress. He was accused in a number of cases pertaining to illegal iron ore mining. The induction of Singh, who is a businessman seems to be related to making a voting stronghold in Bellary. He was apparently recruited by Siddaramaiah. This makes matters suspicious. The probe into illegal mining was taken up by the Congress. But Anand Singh is also one of the wealthiest politicians in the state. This might work out poorly for the Congress if they are not careful. This probe was meant to put BJP at a disadvantage in the run-up to the polls.