Negotiating Rights for Mineral Based Development
Ajit Ranade, Chief Economist, Aditya Birla Group
Cities have larger densities, which is a unavoidable, irresistible process. These will use a lot of coal, limestone, bauxite, minerals, which come from only a certain part of India.
The same areas have a 4 way overlap of resources – forest cover, water bodies and wildlife and you have the adivasis. Under these are the minerals which we need for our development. The anti migrant sentiment in this sense is amusing as we welcome the minerals, but we don’t want the people from these regions.
Mineral are national assets. They are sovereign wealth. So when you want to mine, you go to the sovereign to ask for permission to extract it. Pay a fee etc.. But you also need to go to the State government to buy or take on lease . There is a long process plus greasing of going from centre to state for getting these things through. Why is it that other countries like US or Canada or places like South Africa do not have this problem?