Illegal mines, crusher units raided in Dankari Hill of Jajpur

Jajpur: Initiating action against the illegal mines and crusher units operating at the Dankari Hills under Dharmasala police limits here on Monday, the Jajpur district administration raided those and started the sealing process.

Acting on the orders of the National Green Tribuanal (NGT) and Odisha Governor Ganeshi Lal’s direction to Forest Department in connection with the case, a joint team of Jajpur district administration and police conducted the raid this morning. The raid was conducted in the presence of Forest and Environment, Mining and the Energy departments and the Odisha State Pollution Control Board (OSPCB).

To maintain law and order situation during the raid prohibitory orders under Section 144 was also clamped in and around the Dankari Hill, reports say.

While the OSPCB has given permission for mining in four areas in the Dankari Hill so far, illegal mining was going on at a number of places. As many as four of those were sealed during today’s raid. In addition to that, documents of some large crusher units which have come up in the area are also being verified and those will be sealed if need arises, said officials.

Administration swung into action after one RTI activist of Jajpur filed a petition in the NGT against the illegal mining in Dankari a few months back and the body on October 5 ordered Odisha Government and the Jajpur district administration to take action.

The same activists had also met Governor Ganeshi Lal at Raj Bhawan on September 7 on the issue this year.

Notably, the Union Petroleum and Natural Gas Ministry has planned an underground oil reservoir project in Dankari hill forest area. To be set up on an area of 400 acres of land and at a cost of Rs 4,000 crore the project has witnessed an inordinate delay due to failure of State Government to acquire land for the purpose.

Also Read: Illegal Mining: Odisha Govt to begin process of confiscating property of defaulter mining owners

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