Illegal sand mining: Administration wakes up to Punjab CM Amarinder’s tweet; seizes machinery, detains 23
Waking up from deep slumber after chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh’s tweet on illegal mining, Nawanshahr district authorities on Tuesday sprung into action and in a massive crackdown seized huge machinery and detained 23 people in this connection.
The move came after Amarinder, while on his way to Kartarpur in his official helicopter, spotted ‘illegal mining’ on the banks of Sutlej in Phillaur and Rahon. He tweeted pictures of JCB machines along the river.
In his tweet, the CM ordered a probe and asked deputy commissioners and senior superintendents of police (SSPs) concerned to “seize” the equipment.
The illegal sand mining has become a contentious issue in Punjab since the Captain government had taken the charge, especially after names of some ruling party leaders surfaced in this regard.
Opposition parties have targeted the government over illegal mining, forcing the CM to order a setting up of multi-department teams, headed by DCs to keep a check on this malpractice. However, sources said that nothing much was done before the tweet.
‘Quarries legal, mining illegal’
Both police and civil officials of the Nawanshahr district, who immediately rushed to check the illegal mining at 13 quarries in the district, said the quarries from which the sand was extracted are legal, but the machinery used to extract the sand is illegal.
Nawanshahr SSP Satinder Singh said they have seized 30 trucks, 17 poclains, four JCBs and one tractor being used illegally to extract sand from six quarries.
“We have also detained 23 people in this connection, while cases are yet to be registered as the police and mining teams are investigating into the case,” the SSP said, adding that cases will be registered soon.
The police and officials from the mining department had raided quarries in villages including Malikpur, Mandala, Behrsaal, Laalewal, Burjtehaldas and Khoje.
Sources said many people involved in illegal mining managed to flee from various spots, getting prior information about the raids.
Why machines used to extract sand?
Despite the ban on using machines like JCBs, poclains and excavators for mining, sources said contractors use the machinery to extract more sand than they are entitled to.
They said that as there is no check on the quantum of the sand miners are extracting, they are taking benefit by extracting extra sand from the riverbed to earn big profits.
Jalandhar deputy commissioner (DC) Varinder Sharma said the district administration sent its teams to Phillaur, but no illegal sand mining was detected there.
Meanwhile, Amarinder asked the director general of police (DGP) to expedite the formulation of a comprehensive strategy in coordination with the mining department and district administrations to ensure a complete end to illegal mining across the state.
(The story has been updated)
Mumbai: The Central Railway on Monday announced that ten more air-conditioned local services will be added on the main line to benefit Thane, Kalyan and Badlapur commuters. The services will be operational on both up and down lines to and from CSMT. At present, 56 AC local services are operational on the Central line which will increase to 66 after the addition. Railways will announce a date for the start of these services soon.
The personal assistant (PA) of Member of Legislative Council Rajhans Singh has filed a complaint that a resident of Kurar in Malad East's social media account, 39, Dinesh Dahiwalkar was hacked and a derogatory post was shared from his handle. Dahiwalkar had posted on a social media platform congratulating all BJP leaders inducted into the state cabinet and also congratulating Ashish Shelar for taking over as the Mumbai BJP president after MLA Mangal Prabhat Lodha became the cabinet minister.
Drumbeats resonated in their hearts even as their fingers flew on the bagpipes. These children predominantly belong to the Ismaili (Khoja Muslim) community, registered with the Bharat Scouts and Guides musical band, which had organised a parade with members of diverse communities to commemorate the 75th Independence Day anniversary on Monday. A lane in Hasnabad came alive as around 150 members from the community marched from Aga Khan 1 Hasan Ali Shah mausoleum at Mazgaon.
Mumbai The Bombay high court (HC) recently directed the demolition of a building in Thakurdwar in South Mumbai, which was home to widows until 2019. The court made the decision after it was informed by the building owners and the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation that the load-bearing structure was more than 100 years old and had developed cracks.
Mumbai: The Shiv Sena plans to undertake an organisational rejig to overcome the damage inflicted by the vertical split in the party and promote fresh blood. In Sena's organisational apparatus, Mumbai has 12 vibhags (two for each Lok Sabha segment) and 11 vibhag pramukhs who play a crucial role in the party organisation. Sena also has 227 shakhas or local offices, one each for a municipal ward in Mumbai.