The futility of the mechanism of speed restrictions imposed by the authorities on mining trucks came to the fore at the meeting of the mining stakeholders convened by the deputy collector, Quepem, Agnelo Fernandes on Thursday.
During the course of the discussion, when Sanguem PI Uttam Raut Desai questioned the mining officials about the mechanism for monitoring speed restrictions, they pointed out to the GPS devices fitted on trucks that track the speed and location of the vehicles, and that the system is designed so as to prevent trucks found violating speed limits from being loaded with or the next day. However, in a moment of misplaced excitement, when a truck driver showed the police officials his mobile phone to show how digital messages are received once a truck crosses speed limit, he was found to have been receiving such messages quite often, thereby proving that truck drivers violate the speed limits with gross impunity.
At this point, Desai warned him and the other truck drivers that such frequent violations would not be brooked even as he questioned the efficacy of the GPS-based speed monitoring system to rein in overspeeding vehicles.
Fernandes also warned truck drivers against employing drivers having no valid driving licenses. The meeting was convened by Fernandes in a bid to facilitate smooth transportation of the e-auctioned iron ore from Tellem mine to Cape jetty. Truck drivers from Tolle and surrounding villages have been demanding that only local trucks be engaged for the transportation. Besides residents of these villages, pointing out to the multitude of problems faced by them on account of the mining transportation, have demanded jobs and other facilities to them before the resumption of mining activities.
While the officials of the mining company present for the meeting assured to convey their demands to the management, local truck drivers decided not to deploy their trucks for transportation with the firm until their demands are met.
Officials of the mining company said that the firm intended to transport at least one shipment after so many years before the commencement of monsoons, and assured to restrict the number of trucks to 150 per day.