The six-member team of Justice MB Shah Commission probing the multi-crore mining scam verified the records of at least seven mines on the second day of its investigation in the State on Thursday.
Besides officials of different mining circles, representatives of several mining companies were summoned by the Commission. Declining to divulge the findings so far, UV Singh, the team leader, said the Commission had been looking into different aspects like violations under forest, environment (air and water), mines and other related laws.
Most of the iron ore and manganese mines in the State would, however, come under the scanner of the Commission. “The Commission will verify records and probe all the iron ore and manganese mines allocated since 1952 whether closed or in operational stage,” Singh said.
About 186 to 195 mines will be verified by the team, Singh said and added that the team would like to make a deep study of the mining activities in the State. It may also visit certain mining areas, if required, during the investigation. The team is likely to stay in Odisha till October 11, he said.
The panel has sought documents from Steel and Mines, Forest and Environment and Revenue departments, Commercial Tax, State Pollution Control Board (SPCB), Indian Bureau of Mines (IBM) and regional office of Union Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF). It had also visited the State in December, 2011 to probe mining irregularities.
The Commission, appointed by the Centre, had been probing mining scams in different states. Justice Shah, however, is not part of the team this time.