HRF demands action against mining company

Members of HRF, Adivasi Hakkula Sangam, Visakha Agency Joint Action Committee All India Agricultural and Rural Labour Association, staging a protest at Cheemalapaduon Monday.  

Cases have to be filed under relevant provisions of the Forest Conservation Act against the Stone Plus company for its ‘pillage of reserve forest’ in Cheemalapadu notified reserve forest block in the catchment area of the Kalyanalova reservoir, said V.S. Krishna, A.P. and TS Coordination Committee member of the Human Rights Forum (HRF).

He was addressing a dharna by local farmers and adivasis who have for three days been blocking the transportation of granite slabs by the company near the reservoir in Ravikamatham mandal of Visakhapatnam district on Monday.

The 195 granite blocks quarried by the Stone Plus company were seized by the Forest department on May 1.

He said the Visakhapatnam Divisional Forest Officer in a letter on March 16 to the Director, Mines and Geology, urged “to cancel the mining lease granted erroneously in favour of Stone Plus since the lease area falls in the notified forest block.”

‘DFO pleas unheeded’

Earlier the DFO had written to the Assistant Director, Mines and Geology, stating that no transit permit be issued without clearance from the Forest department. “Both these requests went unheeded. The DFO had stated that some revenue officials had created false survey numbers to grab forest land and sought action against them by the District Collector. No action has been initiated till date,” said Mr. Krishna, displaying the letters of the DFO.

Mr. Krishna sought an investigation into the matter. “It is high time the entire area is declared a no mining zone,” he stated.

District secretary, Adivasi Hakkula Sangam, Nalli Kalyanam said that the Forest personnel who had stood guard to the seized granite slabs and machinery had suddenly left the place on September 25.

Visakha Agency Joint Action committee convener Ramarao Dora, P.S. Ajay Kumar, national secretary of the All India Agricultural and Rural Labour Association, and State secretary Bugatha Bangarao spoke.

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Printable version | Oct 28, 2020 12:24:09 AM |

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