Dirty corruption in lower levels of governance: Parrikar

Panaji, Dec 19 (IANS) A lot of "dirty" corruption is still on in the lower levels of governance in Goa, although overall it has been reduced by 50 percent, said Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar Wednesday.

Speaking at the Goa Liberation Day rally in the state capital, Parrikar said that the ban on mining by courts has affected Goa's gross state domestic product (GSDP) by around 20 to 30 percent.

"I know corruption is going on. But I can say that it has been reduced by 50 percent. Corruption of the dirtiest kind is happening at the lowest levels," he said.

When Parrikar was sworn-in as the chief minister in March this year, the senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader had promised a regime with "zero tolerance to corruption".

Parrikar said he would be in a position to reduce corruption by 80 to 90 percent.

Commenting on the scenario after the Supreme Court imposed the ban on mining, Parrikar said that Goa's GSDP, nearly $3 billion had shrunk by 20 to 30 percent following the ban, which has frozen all mining and allied activity.

"The government will put a stronger case before the Supreme Court, pleading with them to resume legal mining. Over 20 percent of the people in Goa are in financial distress because of the mining ban," Parrikar said, adding that he was working on innovative policies which will make up for the mining shortfall.

"The new tax strategies will not affect the common people," he said.

Goa celebrates Liberation Day Dec 19 as on this day in 1961 the Indian armed forces liberated the state from over 450 years of Portuguese colonial rule, 14 years after India's Independence.

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