NGT forms panel to look into plea alleging illegal mining in Odisha
New Delhi: The National Green Tribunal has formed a committee to look into a plea alleging illegal mining and stone crushing in Odisha. A bench, headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel, constituted the committee comprising officials from the State Pollution Control Board (SPCB), District Collector, State Environment Impact Assessment Authority (SEIAA), Central Pollution Control Board and the Ministry of Environment and Forests.
“The joint committee may ascertain facts and also consider the view point of the affected parties. Based on facts found, the concerned statutory authority may take appropriate action, following due process of law. The nodal agency will be the State PCB for coordination and compliance. A factual and action taken report may be furnished within three months by e-mail,” said the bench, also comprising Justice S K Singh and expert member Nagin Nanda.
The tribunal directed the petitioner to serve set of papers to the parties and file an affidavit of service within one week.
The NGT was hearing a plea filed by Odisha resident Sukanti Pradhan and others against illegal mining by Chinmay Kumar Nayak and operation of illegal stone crushers by Kunal Structure (I) Pvt Ltd at Jhilli Mouza in Dhenkanal. According to the applicant, mining is far in excess of the permit.
The plea said: “In the process of mining, there is felling of trees, illegal blasting and damage to the houses. Stone crushers do not have any statutory consent and do not meet the siting criteria. No green belt has been developed. There is no demarcation of the leased area and mining is taking place beyond the leased area. Overloaded vehicles are being plied on rural roads, without the approval from the Rural Development department, which is resulting in air pollution.”