Illegal mining still rampant in Aravalli ranges

BHIWANI: Despite a blanket ban by the Supreme Court, illegal mining continues to wreck havoc in the environmentally fragile Aravalli ranges of the district.

Sat Singh

Tribune News Service

Bhiwani, May 7

Despite a blanket ban by the Supreme Court, illegal mining continues to wreck havoc in the environmentally fragile Aravalli ranges of the district.

Though the administration claims to pro-active in tackling the menace by impounding 90 vehicles and recovering more than Rs30 lakh as fine from the violators in the past year, but the activity seems unstoppable.

Sources said they have been getting reports of mining in Dadri subdivision villages — Kaliyana, Pichopa, Khedi Battar, Shishwala, Manakwas, Bilawal, Gudana and in Tosham villages — Dadam and Khanak. It is the handiwork of a handful of influential people with political and official links.

“Owing to the good quality available at Dadri subdivision the stones are used in the foundation of buildings,” said a Dadri resident.

Requesting anonymity, a stone crushing unit owner at Tosham told The Tribune that it was an irony. In the absence of mining, the locals are without work while the well connected violators are busy making a killing.”

A leading advocate of Dadri confided that then police has a lot of say in violation of the ban. “Without the knowledge of the cops, the stones cannot be mined by anyone from the hills,” he added.

District Mining Officer Vasudev Yadav downplayed such claims and said FIRs were registered whenever a violation is reported. Things are under control and last year’s data also include vehicles used for carrying stones without proper documents from Rajasthan.

He said that a team of the department, excise, forest and police is always on standby to conduct raids in case of any information.

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