Is a new wind blowing through India’s villages and hills? Yes, something of a breeze seems to be wafting towards Nyamgiri – site of a proposed massive bauxite mine. This has already proved to be the most controversial of India’s brace of planned mining projects, at least so far as the rest of the world is concerned. There are many more such ventures which have not attracted anything like the publicity this one has generated in Europe, particularly in the UK. But whether the gust becomes more substantial depends largely on the tenacity of the new Minister of Environment and Forests and his supporters. One might already detect a slight change in the highly aggressive attitude formerly adopted (at least in public) by Vedanta Resources plc, the London company behind the Nyamgiri project. At the company’s annual general meeting in London on July 27th, Vedanta’s executive chairman, Anil Agarwal, made a point of stressing that Vedanta hadn’t got permission yet to mine Nyamgiri. (In fact it isn’t Vedanta but its subsidiary, Sterlite Industries India Ltd, which was granted joint ownership with the Orissa government of the project.) Nonetheless, Agarwal’s statement was manifestly aimed at defusing growing anger directed at the project, rather than confronting any key issues. In no way did he evince serious intent to address numerous allegations of environmental and human rights violations which have already occurred; or are virtually certain to occur in the future. On the contrary, on several occasions between January and July this year, Agarwal has boasted that the mine was ready to go, and would be opened within a few months. It is largely because of local peoples’ direct interventions that the time line has had to be moved back. [Comment by Nostromo Research, 24 August 2009]