Bhartesh Singh Thakur
Chandigarh, April 5
An NGT panel has recommended a fine of Rs 7.5 crore on Dadam mining lease holder, M/s Govardhan Mines and Mineral, for “grossly” violating the “approved mining plan” and the conditions of environmental clearance and consent to operate (CTO).
The accident had occurred at pit Nos. 37 and 38, and forest pillar No. 31 had also fallen due to landslide.
The NGT took cognisance of the incident on January 2 and constituted an eight-member joint committee to ascertain the extent of violations, damage to environment and human life and extent of the compensation paid and payable.
Regional Officer (Bhiwani), Haryana State Pollution Control Board (HSPCB), recorded that the mining unit had not submitted the comprehensive study of slope stabilisation of mine benches. Also, it had not maintained the benches of proper height and width and the slope of 70 degrees in the pit Nos. 18, 22, 23, 25, 27, 31, 37 and 38. The unit had not maintained the 33 per cent green area out of the total lease of 48.87 hectares.
The report from the Director General Mine Safety (DGMS), Ghaziabad, also submitted that the mining area was not “adequately benched, sloped and secured as to prevent danger from fall of sides”.
The joint committee said Rs 7.5 crore, which is 25 per cent of the net profit of the project proponent (Rs 314 crore), might be levied on the project proponent (lease holder) for violation of approved mining plan, conditions of environmental clearance and CTO.
The committee recommended that the state government might get the damage cost estimated for illegal mining in the barrier between plantation and mining area and “may recover the cost of the illegally mined” stone from the lease holder.
The committee mentioned that it didn’t receive any information on the cost of the damage to the Aravali plantation from the department concerned but recommended the state government to recover the cost of damage from the project proponent after an assessment.
Earlier, Haryana CM Manohar Lal Khattar had refused a CBI inquiry into the Dadam mining incident during the recently concluded Budget session.
The next date in the case before the NGT is May 18, where the joint committee’s report will be considered.
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