Workers launch stir against ban on boat in sand mining

Published on Nov 18, 2019 12:12 AM IST
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PRAYAGRAJ Sand mine workers of Prayagraj and Kaushambi under the banner of All India KIsan Majdoor Sabha (AIKMS) have launched a massive campaign against the state government’s order dated 24 June 2019 of stopping sand mining by boats from river ghats, informed Suresh Nishad, vice president, AIKMS, Prayagraj on Sunday.

He said they will distribute one lakh pamphlets in support of their demand and would launch a massive agitation if the order was not withdrawn. “Even then if the government refuses to withdraw this illegal order the sand workers will be forced to defy the order and start mining by boats,” he said.

Raj Kumar Pathik, general secretary, AIKMS, Prayagraj, said despite massive protests by the workers and explaining in detail the incoherent basis for such an order passed unilaterally by the director, geology and mining, the Prayagraj administration had failed to make any move to get the order rectified.

“The Allahabad administration has been arguing that it is the National Green Tribunal (NGT) which has ordered that mining by boats be disallowed but there is no such order by the NGT nor is this a condition in the NGT bye laws for granting no objection certificate,” he claimed.

“The order signed clearly states that this has been passed on the basis of rule 41 G of the 1963 mining rules. Rule 41 G states that while mining in the riverbed the miner is permitted to dig up to 3 metres depth or where water level is reached, whichever is less. Obviously this applies to dry river beds. The director geology and mining has applied this to in-stream mining in flowing rivers and has snatched the livelihood of more than 1 lakh sand mine workers,” claimed Pathik.

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