Ex-Goa CM Kamat gets interim anticipatory bail in mining case

Panaji : Former Chief Minister of Goa Digambar Kamat, facing a probe in the illegal mining scam case, got a breather as the District Court granted him interim anticipatory bail on Monday.

While granting interim relief to the Congress leader, Justice Irshad Agha stated that if Special Investigation Team (SIT) of Goa Police arrests Kamat, he should be bailed out on a personal bond of Rs 1 lakh and a surety of the same amount. Next hearing of the pre-arrest bail application filed by Kamat, has been fixed by the court on November 27.

The SIT is currently probing into Kamat’s role in a case filed way back in September 2014 against mine owner Prafulla Hede. It has been alleged that the delay in the renewal of the lease for a mine in South Goa was condoned by the government in an irregular manner when Kamat was holding mining portfolio.

It may be recalled that, former principal secretary Rajiv Yaduvanshi in his magisterial statement had declared that it was on Kamat’s behest he had followed a wrong procedure in condoning the delay in filing over 40 mining lease renewal applications.

Justice M B Shah Commission, which probed alleged rampant illegal mining in Goa, had observed in its report that several mining companies were allowed to fraudulently use the provision of condoning the delay in renewal of mining lease.

It was reported in some local papers today that SIT conducted a search at Kamat’s South Goa residence on Saturday with the intention to place in under arrest for custodial interrogation. However, the SIT members could not trace Kamat as his residence was found to be locked. Prosecutor G Kirtani, however, denied there was any attempt made by SIT to arrest Kamat.

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