Mukerian villagers up in arms over ‘illegal’ mining
Police and civil officials said they had to follow the orders of the Punjab and Haryana high court. The court had directed the administration to remove all hindrances from the road.Updated: Oct 21, 2017 12:07 IST
Hindustan Times, Hoshiarpur
A day after residents of Mukerian, sub division Chakmirpur village, reinstalled a barricade removed by the police on the administration’s orders, a heavy police posse, accompanied by an executive magistrate, dismantled the structure amid protest by the locals.
Villagers alleged that the heavy machinery passing through the village had become a nuisance for them. However, the police and civil officials said they had to follow the orders of the Punjab and Haryana high court. The court had directed the administration to remove all hindrances from the road.
Sangharsh committee president Sandesh Kumari said, most of the affected persons were ousted from Pong dam, who were rehabilitated in the village many years ago.
The police reached the village at around noon so that the villagers could not disrupt the removal of the barricade,which was removed with a JCB. The villagers protested against the move and argued with the officials but they were told that the court orders had to be implemented.
Mukerian deputy superintendent of police Ravinder Kumar said the action was taken on the orders of Mukerian sub-divisional magistrate Komal Mittal. Mittal revealed that acting on a civil writ petition, the high court had, on August 24, directed the Hoshiarpur deputy commission to take necessary action to evict encroachment from the public passage within two months of passing the orders.
Members of the Khanan Roko Zameen Bachao Sangharsh Committee, which is fighting against the illegal mining in the area, alleged that movement of heavy machinery had not only devastated the roads but was a threat to their lives. “We are prone to accidents due to the dilapidated roads. The dust from mineral carrying tippers and trucks are a health hazard,” said activist Dharminder Singh. He said the petitioner had concealed actual facts from the court at the behest of stone crushers.
Sangharsh committee president Sandesh Kumari said, most of the affected persons were ousted from Pong dam, who were rehabilitated in the village many years ago. “The government is again bent upon uprooting them by supporting crushers who are harming our land,” she said.
First Published: Oct 16, 2017 12:53 IST