Madurai

Illegal sand mining stopped

Undoing the damage: Deep pits created by illegal sand mining in Alathur kanmoi in Madurai being levelled by earthmoving equipment on Sunday.

Undoing the damage: Deep pits created by illegal sand mining in Alathur kanmoi in Madurai being levelled by earthmoving equipment on Sunday.   | Photo Credit: G. Moorthy

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Licence issued to violator yet to be cancelled

Illegal mining of sand from Alathur kanmoi (tank) near Kaathakinaru in Madurai North taluk, which was going on for a week with pits dug for more than 15 feet, has been stopped by officials.

They have asked the violators to level the pits dug during mining with the top layer of soil taken from remaining part of the tank. When The Hindu visited the spot on Sunday, at least three earthmoving equipment were at work and the pits were levelled to a considerable extent.

However, officials said that no complaint was preferred with the police and the licence granted to the person for lifting alluvial soil was yet to be cancelled.

The mining was stopped after The Hindu carried a report about illegal mining going on brazenly at the spot while licence was granted only for lifting the top layer of alluvial soil for agricultural purposes. Residents complained that the activity was not stopped despite alerting the officials.

When contacted, a senior revenue official said that though the licence was granted by the office of the Tahsildar, the responsibility to monitor violations rested with the Public Works Department. “After receiving inputs about the violation, we alerted the Assistant Engineer-PWD. He has stopped the activity and asked the violators to level the area. The licensee has been asked not to lift even alluvial soil from the kanmoi for now,” he said.

AE report

On the possibility of cancelling the licence due to the violation, he said that it would be decided following a report that is expected from the AE.

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Printable version | Jan 26, 2020 5:56:05 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Madurai/illegal-sand-mining-stopped/article24369537.ece

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