Despite monsoon ban, sand mined illegally in Dera Bassi’s Kakrali village
Even though the Punjab government has banned sand mining operations on riverbeds during the monsoon, till September 15, illegal mining is continuing in the Ghaggar near Kakrali village in Dera Bassi.
People with mining contracts in the area have alleged that some unscrupulous elements were digging up sand on Sunday. They fled when they were spotted by men working for a contractor.
“We have received complaints regarding illegal mining in Ghaggar and I have asked the team to check and lodge a police complaint. Last month too we lodged an FIR against some persons on the same site,” said Gurpreet Pal Singh Sandhu, district mining officer.
In the past three years 50 FIRs have been lodged to cope with the problem, but no one has been convicted as yet. About 17 cases were registered in 2018; 21 in 2019 and 12 in 2020, police records state.
Around 50% cases in the past three years were registered in Mubarakpur, Dera Bassi.
On July 6, Majri Police had booked former director general of police (DGP) Paramdeep Singh Gill and 44 farmers of Saini Majra under Section 21 of the Mine and Minerals (Regulations and Development) Act for allowing illegal mining on their land. A fine of Rs 11 crore was imposed on them by the mining department.
Mohali deputy commissioner Girish Dayalan said he had directed officials to take strict action against offenders and also owners of sites where illegal mining was carried out.
In July last year, the mining department had imposed a penalty of Rs 52 crore on 193 landowners in three villages of Mohali — Mianpur Changar, Kubaheri and Abhipur— for allowing illegal mining.