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Posted at: Jun 24, 2016, 1:01 AM; last updated: Jun 24, 2016, 1:01 AM (IST)

Mining set to resume in state

Pradeep Sharma

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 23

The construction sector is in for big relief with mining of sand and gravel set to resume in a major part of the state.

Issues pertaining to the resumption of mining, including illegal mining, were discussed at a high-level review meeting of the Mines and Geology Department held under the chairmanship of Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar here today.

Haryana Minister of State for Mines and Geology Nayab Singh Saini told The Tribune that two major mining blocks — in the Ghaggar river from Panchkula to Ambala and the other in the Yamuna in Yamunanagar district — would be operational soon as environmental clearance was being expected soon from the Ministry of Environment and Forests. The e-tendering process for the allotment of blocks across the state was also at an advanced stage.

Reiterating the BJP government commitment to provide sand and gravel at affordable rates, the minister said strict legal action would be taken against those indulging in illegal mining.

Mining resumed in Mahendragarh and Bhiwani districts last year after over five years. In a major shift from the earlier policy, the Khattar government formulated a policy for the allotment of smaller blocks through e-tendering.

During the Congress regime, the mining mafia monopolised the mining business in the state for several years in connivance with politicians and officials. Competition as a result of the earmarking of smaller blocks and allotment of mining contracts to a large number of people seems to have broken the monopoly of big contractors.

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