Special Correspondent

The court had passed the earlier order on a petition which sought to restrain the PWD from using machinery

CHENNAI: The Madras High Court has modified its earlier direction to the authorities not to use any machinery for sand quarrying in Palar river bed in some villages in Kancheepuram and Tiruvannamalai districts.

In its order, a Division Bench comprising Justices Elipe Dharma Rao and K.K. Sasidharan said the interim stay already granted by the court on February 23 was being modified to the effect that the respondents are permitted to carry on quarrying operations as contemplated under rule 36-A (6) of the Tamil Nadu Minor Mineral Concession Rules. As per the provision, no machinery should be used for quarrying sand from river beds, except with the permission of the Industries Secretary or any other authority or officer authorised by him in this behalf, who may grant permission if the use of machinery would not be detrimental to ecology.

The court had passed the earlier order on a petition which sought to restrain the PWD from using machinery for quarrying and loading sand from the river bed.

Following a petition by the Kancheepuram District Collector, the Bench modified the order.

On behalf of the government, it was submitted that at present sand quarrying was being done only by the government. The government would not allow more than the permissible level for quarrying.

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