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Panel to suggest steps to check illegal mining

Mohan Chauhan, Director Industries, today constituted a committee to suggest remedial measures to check illegal mining in the industrial belt of Baddi-Barotiwala-Nalagarh (BBN) of the state.

The mining mafia had tried to overrun the vehicle of the SDM here when he was on a visit to check illegal mining on the Nalagarh-Ropar State Highway on Wednesday.

A committee comprising SDM and officials from various departments like the Public Works Department, Irrigation and Public Health Department, Forest, Revenue, Industry, etc., has been constituted to suggest measures to control illegal mining in this bordering industrial belt where even directions to restrict the movement of vehicles carrying quarry material between 8 pm to 6 am were not being followed in the absence of policemen.

Chauhan took stock of the situation today along with a team of officials, including Tehsildar, Mining Officer and the Superintendent of Police.

Chauhan said the department will soon introduce barcodes on the M Forms to check illegal mining as it was leading to loss of revenue to the state government. The Mining Officer had also been directed to prepare an inventory of the stock lying with the stone crushers so as to curb sale of quarry material to Punjab where it was being sold at profitable rates.

The mining officer has been directed to sit in the BBN area for 10 days every month and monitor mining activities. Apart from this, a toll free telephone number will soon be installed in the office of the state geologist where complaints against illegal mining can be made for prompt action, Chauhan said.

He said since the area had a porous border, it required a coordinated approach to curb this menace as the government had authorised several officials to check illegal mining.

With reports pointing to illegal mining in the demarcated protected forest officials of the Revenue and the Forest Department had a larger role in checking this illegal trade, he said.

He also held a meeting with members of the Stone Crushers Association, which said majority of the mining material was being transported to the Punjab where mining was banned.

Kuldeep Rathode, member, All India Congress Committee, has demanded a thorough probe in the incident. He said officers trying to curb such mafias should be provided complete protection by the state government to send the right signal to the masses.

 

The Tribune (10-08-2013)