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Friday, April 6, 2012


District mining officer suspended

District mining officer suspended

Chandigarh, April 6
The Punjab government today placed under suspension the services of Bhola Singh Brar, Industries and District Mining Officer, Ropar and Mohali, for his alleged failure to check rampant illegal mining of sand and gravel.
Ludhiana Industries and District Mining Officer Vishav Bandhu has been transferred in Brar’s place.
The action has been taken following an exposure of large-scale illegal mining of minor minerals in the river beds of the Sutlej and Suar in Ropar district. Principal Secretary, Industries, AR Talwar, confirmed Brar’s suspension on the charges of dereliction of duty and for his failure to check illegal mining.
The mining officer of Mandi Gobindgarh, Mukesh Khanna, has been transferred to Ludhiana.
Following the publication of the news report in these columns, the Ropar administration, led by Deputy Comnmissioner GK Singh and SSP JS Aulakh got into action and over the past four days, they have been surveying the area and booked all those involved in the illegal mining.
The district administration has registered over 50 FIRs against those involved in the illegal mining, booked as many people, besides sealing 52 stone crushers that have come up in Ropar district without the requisite permission from the state government and for involvement in crushing of gravel lifted from the river bed and other places that have not been categorised as legal quarries.
The Tribune, in its issue dated April 2, had highlighted how the “mining mafia” has set up more than 20 new crushers in two villages of Agampur and Suhara in Ropar district along the Sutlej. More than 600 trucks ferry sand and gravel from these two illegal mining sites daily, doing business worth more than Rs 4.5 crore a day. The illegal miners also pay “royalty” to their political bosses in order to carry on their clandestine operations.

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