‘Mining is like a search-and-destroy mission.’
Mining is very hazardous for the environment, not only because it destroys the natural resources and biodiversity of the land but it also results in several side-effects, like the contamination of water supplies, the polluting of surrounding areas that will negatively impact the biodiversity of the region in future generations as well as the displacement of local people, among others.
Vanashakti has involved itself in important anti-mining operations through several ways, hoping to generate awareness of the negative impacts of mining in ecologically rich and sensitive areas. It does this through involving the media, to make the general public aware of these effects. The Vanashakti team has also carried out preliminary research to substantiate these claims, such as for example, detailed research in the Sawantwadi-Dodamarg corridor, which as an ecological hotspot faces threats from these mining projects. Vanashakti also supports other organizations that work in the area. Including local grassroots organisations that face the brunt of environmental vandalisation under the guise of development.
The Vanashakti team spent many hours and many RTI applications to put together the documentation needed to file a Public Interest Litigation that was recently filed in the Mumbai High Court against mining projects in the above region. This was filed in the Mumbai High Court, upon coordination with our associates at the Awaaz Foundation.
So far, Vanashakti has succeeded through its efforts and collaborative approach, to raise serious impediments for the mining industry and has managed to get the Government to acknowledge the destruction of a critical wild life habitat. Support from the media helped grab the attention of Central Minister of Environment and Forests, Mr. Jairam Ramesh. Vanashakti hopes to continue its work to protect India’s forests from the threats of mining corporations.