KARNATAKA

MSPL seeks action against illegal mining

Special Correspondent

Levels allegations against Directorate of Mines and Geology



Company gives details in letter to Chief Minister

Sri Balaji Minerals accused of encroachment



Bangalore: With the subject of illegal iron-ore mining figuring prominently during the legislature session in Belgaum, MSPL Ltd., a mining company based in Hospet, has levelled serious allegations against the Directorate of Mines and Geology.

‘Court orders violated’

It has charged that officials of the directorate are “serving the Reddy brothers’ mining lobby and permitting encroachment and illegal mining” in violation of the orders of the Karnataka High Court.

Letter to Yeddyurappa

The company has submitted a detailed letter on the matter to Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa; the Chief Secretary; the Principal Secretary, Commerce and Industries; and the Director of Mines and Geology.

MSPL had approached the High Court for demarcation of the land leased by it for iron-ore mining stating that Sri Balaji Minerals, owned by the BJP MLA Anand Singh, had encroached upon 800 metres of its land.

Court directive

The Dharwad Bench of the High Court, in its September 26 order, directed the Director of Mines and Geology to demarcate the boundary in the presence of representatives of the two companies. The Director of Mines and Geology directed the Regional Deputy Director of the department to demarcate the boundary and send a compliance report in 20 days.

MSPL, run by the Baldota group, which has been mining in the area since 1961, has charged that local officials of the Mines and Geology Department have “indulged in illegal demarcation of the boundary. All survey systems and procedures have been given the go by.”

It has charged that in contravention of the directions of the High Court, illegal mining is continuing on land that has been leased to it.

“Till date they have mined over three million tonnes of iron ore from our part of the land, valued at approximately Rs. 500 crore. The spoils of this are shared by Reddy brothers and officials. The Government machinery has turned a blind eye to the entire episode and has also been harassing our officers and staff without a valid reason. Every day nearly 15,000 tonnes of ore is being illegally mined and transported from our lease area,” MSPL has said in its letter.

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