Friday, December 5, 2014

Gujarat HC asks CS to facilitate Porbandar collector in curbing illegal limestone mining

Gujarat high court on Thursday directed the chief secretary to see that the district collector's initiative to curb illegal mining of limestone are facilitated with additional manpower.
The HC has intervened in this issue in response to a PIL filed by Dilip Modhwadia through advocate Sandhya Natani. In the past, the Porbandar collector had asked 224 lease holders of limestone mining across the district to put up a fence around their lease land in order to identify and curb illegal mining of limestone. In absence of any demarcation of lease lands, the leaseholders start mining in adjacent land without permission.
When the leaseholders failed to fence off their tracts, the administration snapped electricity connections and other facilities. This led to 15 leaseholders to put up fencing around their plots. The electricity connection was restored in their case.
After the PIL was filed raising the issue of illegal mining, the HC asked the district collector about precautionary steps taken by the administration. The authorities got into action suddenly, the collector ordered measurement of lease tracts and to put up fence around them.
As the proceedings went on before the HC, the court also asked the petitioner to make some of the leaseholders party into proceeding. On Thursday, 114 members of the association of limestone leaseholders moved the HC and requested to become part of the litigation. The HC has allowed them to be joined in the proceedings. Further hearing is kept on December 16.

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