The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) would leave no stone unturned to revive mining operations in Goa, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Wednesday, in a bid to placate the state’s distressed mining-dependent population, also a key BJP vote bank.

“I will leave no stone unturned vis-a-vis resolving this issue. We will definitely work wholeheartedly to remove the obstacles in the way of mining resumption,” Modi said at an election campaign rally at an indoor stadium near Panaji.

Stating that livelihood of a lot of people, dependent on the sector, are at stake, Modi said, “Whether we have to find a legal route or present their case to the Supreme Court, we will work with the state government and according to the wishes of people of Goa.”

Modi’s statement has come at a time when the Goa Mining People’s Front, an organisation of workers, truck and barge operators dependent on the iron ore mining industry, launched a protest in the national capital on Tuesday.

The mining issue has been hanging fire in Goa, since the apex court banned extraction and transportation of iron ore from 88 mines in March 2018. It also asked the state government to re-issue mining leases.

The is the second time is less than a decade that mining has come to a standstill in the state.