File report on illegal mining: HC to state

SHIMLA: Taking a serious note of illegal mining, the state High Court today directed the state government to file a status report stating that what steps have been taken to curb the mining mafia.

Legal Correspondent

Shimla, August 24

Taking a serious note of illegal mining, the state High Court today directed the state government to file a status report stating that what steps have been taken to curb the mining mafia.

It further directed the state to inform what action had been taken against those officers of the district administration, who allowed the mining mafia to construct the road which was later dismantled in Palampur.

A Division Bench comprising Chief Justice Mansoor Ahmad Mir and Justice Sandeep Sharma also asked the authorities that what were the reasons for collapsing of the Kandrouri bridge near Indora on August 11 which was a link between Pathankot and Indora.

The court passed these orders on a petition taken up suo motu by the court as a Public Interest Litigation plea on a news item published in The Tribune last week under the headline, “Roads constructed by mining mafia dismantled”.

It was reported in the news item that the SDM, Palampur, had received complaints from residents of Sulaha that illegal mining was going on in the Neugal river near Paror at Palampur, which was damaging local paths, water channels, road and cremation ground.

It was further reported that the illegal mining was not only resulting in large-scale environmental degradation but also causing loss to the state exchequer as the mining material was being lifted without paying royalty to the state government.

During hearing of the petition, it was observed by the court that it was not understandable where the district administration was sleeping when the mining mafia was constructing the road, which stood now dismantled.

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