MAC: Mines and Communities

South Asia Update

Published by MAC on 2007-01-26

South Asia update

26th January 2007

In flagrant contravention of recommendations made by its own Extractive Industries Review three years ago, the World Bank is financing a major expansion of coal-fired energy (and thus coal mining) in India, through its Global Environment Fund (GEF).

Britain's department for international development (DfID), along with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) is backing Orissa's state government in its ceaseless programme to relocate villagers in favour of massive extractive projects.

- And this, despite full knowledge of India's constitutional provision which forbids the appropriation of Adivasi (tribal) territory by private industry.

News is just emerging of a major landslip at an iron ore mine in the tourist state of Goa which last month claimed the lives of at least six local residents.

After postponing elections scheduled this month in Bangladesh, the country's caretaker government has declared a state of emergency, accompanied by a raft of draconic legislation forbidding a large number of demonstrations and clamping down on critical media comment.

Among the many recent "developments" to arouse the ire of citizens has been the Phulbari coal project in northwestern Bangladesh.

Now the UK company promoting the widely-condemned scheme, along with the Asia Dvelopment Bank, has changed its name - a move construed by some as a "conspiracy" to conceal its true intent.

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