Crackdown on illegal mining in Uttarakhand, Strict curbs in US Nagar
Illegal mining is rampant in US Nagar. Khatima, Sitarganj, Kichha, Bazpur and Kashipur are the main areas where illegal mining is witnessed throughout the year.
Mining will not be permitted before sunrise and after sunset in Kumaon’s US Nagar district, the police said.
Daleep Singh Kunwar, senior superintendent of police (SSP), US Nagar said, “Illegal mining, as well as mining of more than allotted volume or area, will not be permitted at any condition in the district. To curb illegal mining, mining will not be permitted before sunrise and after sunset.”
Illegal mining is rampant in US Nagar. Khatima, Sitarganj, Kichha, Bazpur and Kashipur are the main areas where illegal mining is witnessed throughout the year. People involved in illegal mining extract sand, stones and clay in abundance and mint money, leaving the area prone to flood and soil erosion in rainy season, said an official.
The mining mafia is so powerful that sometimes when police or forest officials of the area concerned conduct raids, illegal mining operators don’t hesitate to attack them. They snatch dumpers, trucks and tractor trolleys if the police or forest officials seize them, said an official.
Kunwar said, “Police will monitor mining areas round-the-clock where illegal mining is rampant. Officials of the department concerned will also accompany the police while raids are conducted in the future. Those found involved in illegal mining activities will be booked under the gangster act if they don’t mend their ways, as they are creating law and order problems.”
“Apart from the government agencies, 23 mining leaseholders are operating in the district. Also, 77 stone crushers are in operation across the district. The department imposes penalties if it finds illegal mining activities or mining of more volume of the mining material,” said Amit Gaurav, district mining officer, US Nagar.
On October 25, in a major action against the police for not taking action on illegal mining in the district, SSP US Nagar suspended ten police personnel - the entire staff of an outpost - and attached eight police personnel of another police outpost with the district police lines.