Officials of the Haryana and Uttar Pradesh governments are accusing one another of sheltering those involved in illegal sand mining and one state is trying to pass the buck to the other when it comes to responsibility for preventing illegal mining in the NCR region.
The National Green Tribunal (NGT) had directed authorities in UP and Haryana to file detailed replies on the issue of sand mining and illegal bridges that were built over the Yamuna for sand trafficking.
The Gautam Budh Nagar district administration produced a paper in which Faridabad-based sand mining contractor Dinesh Tyagi had claimed that he had Haryana government’s permission to build the bridges.
“When the Gautam Budh Nagar district administration lodged an FIR against Tyagi for building an illegal bridge, he claimed that the Haryana government had issued permission. Tyagi submitted the document to the police. Now, Gautam Budh Nagar officials accused Haryana officials of sheltering him during the hearing. UP officials questioned why Haryana did not dismantle the bridge that was in their jurisdiction,” said Aagney Sail, advocate and secretary of the NGT bar association that filed a petition demanding a ban on sand mining.
Haryana irrigation department had dismantled the bridge in Faridabad area five days after UP officials demolished the bridge that was being built in Noida.
“I do not want to talk about it. I am not aware about any case going on in the tribunal regarding an illegal bridge or sand mining,” Sandip Taneja, superintending engineer of the Haryana irrigation department, said on phone.
He refused to speak further and disconnected the call on being asked if he had given the permission to build the bridge.
“After we dismantled the bridge that was built on the Noida side, Haryana police sheltered those mining sand on the Yamuna riverbed. When the UP police tried to stop the mining, Haryana police indulged in arguments. Now, a complete ban on sand mining on the riverbed will help contain such incidents,” said NP Singh, district magistrate of Gautam Budh Nagar district.