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Illegal miners unleash reign of terror in Bhind

Having sustained a gunshot, a man with blood oozing from his abdomen runs for his life in a ward at the Bhind district hospital.

indore Updated: May 19, 2015 16:57 IST
Ranjan and Subhash Jain
Ranjan and Subhash Jain
Hindustan Times
sand mining,illegal mining,crime

Having sustained a gunshot, a man with blood oozing from his abdomen runs for his life in a ward at the Bhind district hospital.

Patients and their caretakers too run out of the hospital for cover.

Meanwhile, the assailant chases the victim resolutely.

Cornered in the hospital and sensing the imminent death, the hapless victim makes one last ditch effort to save his life by closing a glass door and keeping the assailant at bay.

But the man ruthlessly pumps two shots into the victim’s body and flees from the hospital.

This scene might seem straight out of a crime thriller flick, but is actually a CCTV footage that has gone viral on the instant messaging service Whatsapp.

The CCTV footage - which was obtained by some persons from the police and circulated on Whatsapp - is proof of the fact that the law and order situation has collapsed in Bhind, a district in Chambal region that is about 500 kilometers north of Bhopal and is notorious for its gun culture.

The next day of this cold-blooded murder, two more were gunned down in Bhind.

They are a history-sheeter Vinod Yadav, who was allegedly involved in running seven illegal sand mines in the district, and his driver.According to sub-divisional officer of police Ashok Bardwaj, Yadav had more than a dozen criminal cases - including murder, attempt to murder, loot and brawls - against him.

The man killed in the hospital and his killers too were allegedly involved in extorting money from sand miners.

The deteriorating law and order situation in the district is reflected in the murders of more than two dozen people in the past four months.

Of these two dozen people, five were involved in sand mining.

With the mushrooming of illegal mining in Bhind, the criminals often clash with one another to make the most of the illegal business in the district, while the police continue to be as hapless as the local people.

As per official sources, Rs 90 to Rs 95 lakh worth sand is illegally mined in the district every day and smuggled outside.

Police say the traders get the lease for sand mining by hook or crook and delegate the task to locals on contract basis.

The extent of illegal sand mining in the district can be gauged from the fact that the then collector M Sibi Chakraborty imposed a fine of Rs 263 crore on August 19, 2013, on a contractor for illegally storing large quantities of sand.

Former zila panchayat president and Bahujan Samaj Party leader Sanjeev Singh Kushwah accused a few local Bharatiya Janata Party leaders of patronising illegal miners in the district.

Professor at Chaudhary Dileep Singh Girls Degree College, Iqbal Ali, attributed the rise in crimes to illegal sand mining in the district, the presence of a good number of legal and illegal weapons in Bhind and perennial unemployment in the region.

Meanwhile, the state government had transferred superintendent of police Vineet Khanna on Friday. He didn’t respond to phone calls made by HT.

IGP Morena Roop Singh Meena said minor issues sometimes resulted in such crimes despite the best of policing.

He said the people could gauge the effective policing in the district from the fact that even during elections, the law and order situation was under control and there was no violence in Bhind.

First Published: May 19, 2015 16:26 IST