Mega Illegal Mining Scam by Dayadevadas Group Companies Un-Earthed by Government

Beach Minerals

Feb 22 2014

Indian Garnet Sand Company and Southern Enterprises violated the Mining and Environmental Laws.  involved illegal mining of 3.9 million Metric Ton – Government proposed to initiate action in accordance with law –Government of tamilnadu informed to the Honourable High Court madurai bench

 

GOVERNMNET OF TAMILNADU

Industries (MMD.1) Department,

Secretariat, Chennai – 600 009.

Letter No. 17407/MMD.1/2011 dated 14.11.2011

 

From

Dr. N. Sundaradevan, I.A.S.,

Principal Secretary to Government,

To

The Government Pleader

High Court of Judicature at Madras Madurai Bench

Madurai

Sir,

 

Sub :

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mines and Minerals – Major mineral – Tiruchirapalli district -complaints received against two companies namely Tvl. Indian Garnet sand Company and Southern Enterprises– Orders of the Madurai Bench of the Honourable High Court in   W.P.(MD).No.175/2010 dated 09.02.2010- submission of Interim inspection report in respect of Garnet sand mining areas of the said companies – Final inspection report – submitted – Submission of the same to the Honourable High Court – action – requested – regarding.      
 Ref:

 

1Madurai bench of Honourable High Court Order dated  09.02.2010 in  W.P. (MD).No. 175/ 2010. 2D.O.Letter No.2711/ MMD.1/ 2010-1 dated 19.02.2010 of the Principal Secretary to    Government Industries Department, Chennai.    3From District Collector, Tiruchirapalli, Letter Rc (A).No.1174/ 2009 dated 19.09.2011.

 

4GovernmentLr.No.17407/MMD.1/2011       Dated.30.09.2011 5From Commissioner of Geology and Mining., letter Rc. No. 14462/MM7/2007 dated 10.10.2011

 

 

^^^

 

I am to request you to kindly refer to the order of Madurai Bench of Madras High Court dated 9-2-2010 in W.P. No. 175/2010 in the reference 1st cited (copy enclose for reference) in this connection.

 

2. I am to furnish the Gist of issue as follows :-

 

a) Thiru. R. Appu Nadesan, former M.L.A had submitted representations dated 10.11.2007, 21.7.2008 and 6.3.2010 and requested the Government, Industries Department  to initiate action against Tvl. Southern Enterprises and Indian Garnet Sand Co. Pvt Ltd for not complying with the conditions imposed by the Ministry of Environment and Forests. The representations were forwarded to Commissioner of Geology and Mining for taking appropriate action and for report to the  Government. Similarly the subsequent representation received from Thiru.R.Appu Nadesan was also forwarded to CGM.

 

b) Thereafter, Thiru.R.Appu Nadesan filed a writ petition in W.P.No.175/2010 in the Madurai bench of Honourable Madras High Court with a prayer to consider and dispose of his representation dated 21.12.2008.The Honourable Madras High Court has ordered as follows:

“According to the petitioner, several leases have been granted in Anjalam Village of Musiri Taluk for mining and though the lease deed contains specific conditions which relate to the environmental protection, the authorities have not ensured that these conditions are adhered to. The petitioner had given a representation dated 21.12.2008. In this, his request was a team of officials may be deputed to inspect the mining leases area to see whether the above conditions were fulfilled and whether the provisions of the Environmental Protection Act were fulfilled. There has been no response”.

 

c) The Madurai bench of the Honourable Madras High Court has directed also issued direction to Government, Industries department as follows:

 

“Interim inspection reports shall be filed by the respondent with the assistance of pollution control board and the Department of Environment after inspecting the sites and  after giving due notice to the companies concerned as well as to the petitioner.   The then District Collector has constituted a team and the said team of officials have inspected the few areas on 06.03.2010 . An interim report for few areas was furnished by the then District Collector in Lr.No.1174/2009 dt.07.03.2010 to the Government wherein also various violations committed by the lessee companies have been reported.

 

d) Thiru.R. Appu Nadesan once again submitted a representation dated 07.07.2011 to take appropriate action on the subject matter on the points raised in his representation.  This representation was also forwarded to the District Collector by COMMISSIONER OF GEOLOGY AND MINING letter dated 27.07.2011 requesting the District Collector to take appropriate action as directed by the Honourable High Court and the Government and send a consolidated action taken report on the points raised in various representation of Thiru.R.Appu Nadesan.Ex.MLA.

 

3. Consequently, the District Collector  constituted  a team inducting the  district  level various department officials of 1) The Revenue Divisional Officer, Musiri, Tiruchirapalli  district 2)  The Assistant Director of Geology and Mining, Tiruchirapalli, 3) The District Environmental Engineer, Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board , Tiruchirapalli, 4) The Assistant Executive Engineer, PWD-WRO, Thuraiyur , 5) The Assistant Director, Agriculture Department, Thottiam, 6) The Assistant Director, Agriculture Department, Thatheingarpettai , 7) The Assistant Executive Engineer, Tamil Nadu Electricity Board, Thottiam ,  8) The District Forest officer , Tiruchirapalli division and 9)The Assistant Director, Survey department, Tiruchirapalli and instructed them to inspect the leasehold areas jointly and to submit their reports.  The team inspected the mining lease areas and the Factories of the lessee company  from 19.08.2011 to 22.08.2011 with the prior intimation given to the petitioner as well as the lessee company involved in the subject matter. The District Collector has furnished her comprehensive report based on the various inputs given by the various district level department officials who were part of the inspecting team.

 

4. The detailed report on the fact findings as furnished by the District Collector and Commissioner of Geology and Mining have been given below :-

 

Mining lease granted to M/s. Southern Enterprises in Sittalarai and Thumbalam village, Musiri Taluk, Tiruchirapalli District in G.O. 3D. No.75 Industries Department dated 01.08.2005

 

Report of the District Collector:

(i)        In respect of the mining lease area in Sittalarai and Thumbalam villages granted to Tvl.Southern Enterprises, the Indian Bureau of Mines have permitted to mine  a total quantity of 12,882 MT alone from the lease hold area whereas they have mined and obtained transport permit for 89,500M.T of ROM. They have mined and removed 1,57,160 M.T  of  ROM in the leasehold area in Thumbalam village. They have mined and removed 1,56,000 M.T of  ROM from Sittalarai village.

(ii)       The lessee company has paid royalty and obtained transport permit only for 89,500 MT of ROM /garnet mineral whereas they have mined and transported without paying royalty and obtaining transport permit to the tune of 2,13,660 MT of ROM/garnet mineral bearing sand and without obtaining transport permit

 

Remarks of Commissioner of Geology and Mining :

(i)            According to section 4(1A) of MMDR Act,1957,1957  no person shall transport or store or caused to be transported or stored any mineral, otherwise than in accordance with the provisions of this act and rules.

 

(ii)          The State Government has already stipulated a detailed guidelines vide Government letter No. 131 Industries (MMD.2) Department dated 13.06.2000 regarding transportation  of Garnet sand and other minerals so as to avoid illegal mining and also to avoid evasion of royalty payment. The quantity of 3,03,160 M.T of ROM/garnet mineral bearing sand has been mined and transported from the lease hold and non-leasehold areas by the lessee company.   They did not pay royalty and did not obtain the transport permits and Gate pass as stipulated by the Government in their letter referred to above. Hence they have violated section 4(1A) of MMDR Act, 1957,1957 and the guidelines issued by the State Govt. in the above regard.

 

(iii)         They have mined and removed 38,480 MT of ROM/garnet mineral bearing sand from the non lease hold area (survey no. 205/7D). They have mined and removed 2,13,660 M.T of  ROM without paying royalty and 38,480 of ROM mined and removed from non-leasehold area. Hence action has to be taken for the offence of illicit mining and transportation of the above said mineral  in terms of  section 21(5)  of  MMDR Act,1957,1957 for the violation of Section 4(1) of MMDR Act,1957,1957 to levy and collect the Royalty and  cost of the mineral .

 

(iv)         For the offence of illicit mining and removal of 2,13,660 MT of ROM /garnet  mineral bearing sand without paying royalty from the leasehold and non-leasehold area, action has to be taken by the Government under section 21(1)and21(4) of MMDR Act,1957 . The District Collector may be instructed to issue a show cause notice and also accord a personal hearing to the lessee company before taking action for the offence of illicit mining and transportation of the above said ROM/garnet mineral bearing sand.

 

(v)          Moreover it is an offence punishable under section 21(1) of MMDR Act, 1957,1957. Only if the lessee company does not come forward to  compound the offence under Section 23(1) of the said Act , the District Collector can prosecute the lessee company as per the procedures laid down under section 22 of MMDR Act, 1957.

 

(vi)         Since it is a cognisable offence under Section 22 of MMDR Act, 1957,1957  if the lessee company fail to compound the offence, the Collector can authorise any officer to file a complaint before the Police for cognizance of the offence committed by the lessee company.

 

(vii)        They   have mined for a depth of more than 4 meter in some places and 3 meter in certain other areas. This is also a violation of the Rule 22A of Mineral Concession Rules, 1960 since the lessee has not carried out the mining operation in accordance with the conditions  contained in the mining plan approved by IBM nor has the lessee company obtained an approval for the modified mining plan as provided in the said Rule.

 

(viii)      According to the report by the Revenue Divisional Officer , Musiri, the lessee company  have damaged the bank of Eri  and bank of the river which are the  violations of the lease deed condition under part III covenant 5 executed by the lessee company with the District Collector.  The report of the Assistant Executive Engineer, PWD also confirms the damages caused to the said structures.

 

(ix)         They have illegally mined from the non-lease hold areas also.

 

(x)           In this connection it is pertinent to point out that in respect of G.O.3D.No. 75 Industries Department dated 01.08.2005, the MOEF has specifically pointed out that the working of mines should be only by manual method by way of scooping the raw garnet sand with shovel and blades and without using any machinery, drilling and blasting. Envisaged rated capacity of the mine is 6300 TPA (525 TPM).  The lessee company has mined more than 4 meter depth whereas working depth has to be limited to 30 cm. Thus it has caused the violation of the condition imposed by MoEF at the time of granting environmental clearance.   The lessee company has statutorily transported by remitting royalty for a quantity of 89,500 M.T of ROM but is reported to have illegally mined 2,13,660 M.T of ROM .  Therefore the lessee company has evidently indulged in illegal mining.

 

Violations pointed out by District Collector and CGM :-

 

1. Mining of mineral more than the permitted quantity in the approved mining plan – violation of rule 22A of Mineral Concession Rule.

 

2. Mining and transporting mineral without payment of royalty and without obtaining transport permit for a tune of 2,13,560 M.Ton – Violation of section 4(1A) of MMDR Act, 1957.

 

3. It is a punishable offence under section 21 (1) of MMDR Act,1957. If the lessee failed to compound the offence under section 23(1) of MMDR Act, 1957 the Collector can authorise any authorised person to file criminal complaint in the concerned police station against the lessee for the offence committed under section 21(1) of MMDR Act, 1957, as, it is a cognisable offence.

 

4.  The said company has illegally mined to the tune of  38,480 M.Ton in non lease hold areas bearing survey no. 205/7D which is a violation of section 4(1) of MMDR Act,1957 – Punishable under section 21(1) of MMDR Act, 1957.

 

5. The mineral so raised (2,13,560 M.Ton) has to be confiscated on behalf of  Government and if it has been already disposed off, the cost and royalty have to be collected from the lessee company under section 21(5) of MMDR Act, 1957.

 

6. Before confiscation, a show cause notice with a personal hearing has to be given to the lessee company by the District Collector in accordance with the principals of Natural Justice.

 

7. The lessee company have carried out mining operation whereas the working depth has to be limited to 30 cm for depth of 3 meter – this two is a violation of rule 22A of MCR, 1960 as well as violation of condition imposed by MoEF at the time of granting environmental clearance.

 

Thus as per the District Collector’s report, in respect of G.O.Ms. No. 75 dt. 1.8.2005, the lessee company have violated the following.

 

1.  Violation of rule 22A of MCR, 1960

2. Violation of section 4(1) of MMDR Act, 1957

3. Violation of section 4(1A) of MMDR Act, 1957

4. All the above are punishable offence under section 21(1) of MMDR Act,

1957

5. Violation of lease granting order condition

6. Violation of condition of MoEF Clearance.

7. Violation of rule 27(1K) of MCR, 1960

8. Violation of rule 27(1)(i) and rule 27(1)(j) and rule 27(1)(l) of MCR, 1960.

9. Violation of rule 27(4) of MCR, 1960

 

All the minerals so raised have to be confiscated on behalf of government under section 21(5) of MMDR Act, 1957. If the mineral so raised has already been disposed, the cost of mineral and the royalty have to be collected from the lessee company.

 

In respect of violation of rule 27(1)(i) and 27(1)(j) and rule 27(1)(l) of MCR, 1960, the government will take action under rule 27(4) of the MCR, 1960 as recommended by the District Collector and COMMISIONER OF GEOLOGY AND MINING. The Govt., will issue a show cause notice to the lessee company and accord a personal hearing to them will be given to the lessee and if the reply is not convincing, the govt., will take suitable action to cancel the mining leases and forfeit the security deposits.

 

In respect of other violations, the District collector will be directed to take appropriate action after issuing a show cause notice and accord a personal hearing and if the reply furnished by the lessee company is not convincing the District Collector will confiscate the mineral  on behalf of the government. In case, the lessee company fail to compound the offence under section 23(1) of MMDR Act,1957, the District Collector will authorise a competent person to file a criminal complaint in the concerned police station for violation of section 4(1) and 4(1A) of MMDR Act, 1957 which is punishable offence under section 21(1) of MMDR Act, 1957.

 

As per the environmental clearance letter issued by Govt., of India in letter No. J/11015/3/2005-IA-II(M) dated 26.5.2005 the MoEF has accorded environmental clearance to the above said lessee company for an annual production capacity of 6300 Ton per annum working in open cast  by manual method by way of scooping the raw garnet sand with shovel and blades without using any machinery. Drilling and blasting is not involved. Envisaged rated capacity of the mine is 6300 TPA (525 TPM). Working depth is about 30 cm. As per condition No. 2 of general condition no change in the calendar plan including excavation and quantum of garnet sand should be made. Whereas, in this case the lessee company has violated all the above conditions as the mining activity is more than 3 meter depth instead of 30 cm and quantity also has increased. Thus the lessee company has violated not only the onditions imposed by MoEF, but also violated the provisions of MMDR Act, 1957 and          MCRules, 1960.

 

 Mining Lease granted to M/s.Southern Enterprises in Anjalam village,Musiri Taluk,Tiruchirapalli district in G.O.No.77 Industries Department dated 16.8.2005.

 

Report of the District Collector:

 

(i)           The lessee company did not erect boundary stones and fix the name board.  These are all violations of the rule 27(1) (g) of the Mineral Concession Rules, 1960.

 

(ii)          No Mineral is reported to be available in the mining lease area and it is a rocky area.

 

(iii)         Since the lessee company has violated the Rule 27(1) of Mineral Concession Rules,1960 and lease deed condition in Part II Covenant 2,the District Collector has recommended to cancel the lease on the ground of non availability of mineral in the lease hold area  and the mining lease area is found to be a  rocky terrain.

 

(iv)         The District Collector has further reported that the lessee company has obtained transport permits for 51,500 M.T of ROM/garnet mineral bearing sand and misused the permits for transportation of illegally mined material from other areas. Hence, the District Collector has recommended criminal prosecution against the said lessee company as the above said Act of the lessee company  has established a criminal culpability.

 

Views of the DGM:

 

(i)            In this connection, it is pertinent to point out that while processing the ML application the COMMISSIONER OF GEOLOGY AND MINING has recommended rejection of the ML application. The lease was granted only to avoid contempt of Court proceedings.

(ii)           The State Government has granted the lease based on the mining plan duly approved by Indian Bureau of Mines, Ministry of Mines, Government of India vide their letter No.TN/TCR/MP/GNT-1427-Mds dated 02.05.02 in which the reserves of the mineral have been mentioned.

(iii)         The field verification shows that there is no mineral deposit at all in the lease hold area.  Hence it stands clearly proved that by giving a false information in the approved mining plan, the lessee company has obtained the mining lease.   It is a blatant case of cheating the Governments.

(iv)         Hence as recommended by the District Collector, Government may take action to cancel the mining lease after giving a show cause notice and a personal hearing on the ground of having obtained the mining lease by giving a false information in the approved mining plan to Government.

(v)           Since the lessee company has misused the transport permit, as reported by the District Collector, the Government may direct the District Collector to authorise any officer to file a complaint for criminal prosecution to the concerned Police Station or to the Superintendent of Police, Tiruchirapalli.

(vi)         In respect of G.O.3D.No.77 Industries Department dated 16.08.2005, the MOEF has specifically pointed out that the working is open cast by manual method by way of scooping the raw garnet sand with shovel and blades without using any machinery, drilling and blasting is not involved. Envisaged rated capacity of the mine is 20,700 TPA (1725 TPM).Whereas, in the lease area there is no garnet sand. Hence the lessee company has obtained the clearance and mining lease by furnishing false information and which is tantamount to cheating the Government.

 

Violations pointed out by District Collector and CGM :-

 

1. Violation of rule 27(1)(g) of MCR, 1960 and violation of lease deed condition part VII covenant 2.

2. Obtaining transport permits by cheating the government officials – punishable offence under the provisions of Indian Penal Code (IPC)

3. Obtaining mining lease by giving false information in the mining plan – punishable offence under the provisions of IPC.

4. Violation of rule 27(4) of MCR, 1960.

5. Since there is no mineral in the mining lease area, since the lessee has obtained mining lease by submitting approved mining plan with false information, the government will issue a show cause notice and give a personal hearing as to  why the lease should not be cancelled. In case, the lessee failed to submit his reply convincing enough to the government, the govt., will take action to cancel the lease so as to avoid misuse of transport permit and to avoid illegal mining of mineral in the non lease hold area as well.

 

Thus as per the District Collector’s report, in respect of G.O. No. 77, the lessee has violated the following.

 

1. Violation of lease granting order condition

2. Violation of condition of MoEF Clearance.

3. Violation of rule 27(1K) of MCR, 1960.

4. Violation of rule 27(1)(i) and rule 27(1)(j) and rule 27(1)(l) of MCR, 1960.

5. Violation of rule 27(4) of MCR, 1960.

 

In respect of violation of rule 27(1)(i) and rule 27(1)(j) and rule 27(1)(l) of MCR, 1960 the government will take action under rule 27(4) as recommended by the District Collector and COMMISSIONER OF GEOLOGY AND MINING and a show cause notice will be issued to the lessee why the lease should not be determined. A personal hearing will also be given and if the reply is not convincing to government, the government will take action to determine the lease under rule 27(4) of MCR, 1960.

 

Govt., will write to Govt., of India, Ministry of Mines, Indian Bureau of Mines that the lease area has contained only rocks and the lessee company has obtained the mining plan approval by giving false information to IBM and IBM will be requested to take appropriate action against the lessee company according to law and statutory provisions in force.

 

As per the environmental clearance letter issued by Govt., of India in letter No. J/11015/7/2005-IA-II(M) dated 26.5.2005 the MoEF has accorded environmental clearance to the above said lessee for an annual production capacity of 6300 Ton per annum working in open cast  by manual method by way of scooping the raw garnet sand with shovel and blades without using any machinery. Drilling and blasting is not involved. Envisaged rated capacity of the mine is 20700 TPA (1725 TPM). Working depth is about 30 cm. As per condition No. 2 of general condition no change in the calendar plan including excavation and quantum of garnet sand should be made. Whereas, in this case, the area is fully rocky and there is no sand reported to be available.  This clearly establishes the fact  that the lessee company has obtained the clearance by giving false information to Govt., of  India. Hence government will report the above fact to MoEF for withdrawal of the clearance letter issued to the lessee company.

 

 Mining Lease granted to M/s.Indian Garnet Sand Company(P)Ltd in Mavilippatti and Paithamparai village,Musiri Taluk,Tiruchirappalli District  in GO.(3D).No.78  Industries Department dated 16.08.2005

 

Report of the District Collector:

 

(i)           The leasehold areas have exposed the rocky portion. It has been reported that a total quantity of 4,89,320 M.T of ROM/garnet mineral bearing sand has been mined and removed from the lease hold  .

(ii)          Based on the report of the Revenue Divisional Officer and Assistant Director, Geology and Mining ,Tiruchirappalli, the District Collector has recommended to take action as per MMDR Act,1957,1957 to cancel the lease on the ground of non availability of mineral in the leasehold area.

Views of the CGM :

(i)            The District Collector has further informed that the lessee company has obtained transport permit only for 63,844 M.T of ROM/garnet mineral bearing sand out of the total mined and removed materials of 4,89,320 M.T of ROM. Hence they have mined and transported 4,25,476 M.T of ROM/garnet mineral bearing sand without paying royalty and also without obtaining transport permits and gate passes. The above said illicit mining and transportation are violations of the rule 22A of Mineral Concession Rules, 1960 and also a violation of section 4(1A) of MMDR Act, 1957,1957. It is therefore a punishable offence under section 21(1) of MMDR Act, 1957,1957.

(ii)          For the offence of transportation of the 4,25,476   M.T of ROM/garnet mineral bearing sand illegally without obtaining transport permit, action has to be taken  by the Government under section 21(1)and 21(4) of MMDR Act 1957,1957 .

(iii)         The District collector may be asked to issue a show cause notice and also give a personal hearing for the offence committed by the lessee company. In case, the lessee company fails to compound the offence, the District Collector may be informed to take action as per Section 22 of MMDR Act, 1957,1957 for the offence of illicit mining and transportation.

(iv)         Further the District Collector may be asked to authorise any of the sub ordinate officers for criminal prosecution against the lessee company since it is a cognizable offence under Section 22 of the MMDR Act, 1957,1957.

(v)          The State Government have granted the lease based on the mining plan duly approved by Indian Bureau of Mines, Ministry of Mines, Government of India vide their letter No.TN/TCR/MP/GNT-1395-Mds dated 22.04.02 in which the mineral reserves have been mentioned as 14613 M.T of garnet at 40% recovery. Hence a total ROM quantity will come to 36532.5 M.T.

(vi)         The field inspection and verification shows that the lessee company has mined and transported the entire mineral for a total quantity of 4,89,320 M.T of ROM.  Hence it stands clearly proved that by giving false information in the approved mining plan, the lessee company has obtained the mining lease.  Therefore, it is tantamount to cheating the Government.

(vii)        Moreover the lessee company has evidently completely exhausted all the mineral deposits. Hence in order to avoid any further illegal mining and also misuse of transport permits as reported by the District Collector, the Government may take action to cancel the mining lease after giving a show cause notice on the ground of obtaining the mining lease by giving a false information in the approved mining plan.

(viii)      In respect of G.O.3D.No.78 Industries Department dated 16.08.2005, the MOEF has specifically pointed out that the working is open cast by manual method by way of scooping the raw garnet sand with shovel and blades without using any machinery, drilling and blasting. Envisaged rated capacity of the mine is 7,200 TPA (600 TPM). Whereas, in the lease area, the lessee company has obtained transport permit for 63844 M.Ton of ROM and removed the ROM/ garnet mineral bearing sand of 4,89,320 M.T of ROM up to 4 meter depth.  The lessee company has mined more than 4 meter depth whereas working depth is limited to 30 cm. At present there is no garnet sand. Hence the lessee company has obtained the clearance and mining lease by furnishing false information and caused violation of the condition imposed by  MoEF.It is considered to be cheating the Government.

 

Violations pointed out by District Collector and CGM :

 

1. Mining of mineral more than the permitted quantity in the approved mining plan – violation of rule 22A of Mineral Concession Rule.

 

2. Mining and transporting mineral without payment of royalty and without obtaining transport permit for a tune of 4,25,476 M.Ton – Violation of section 4(1A) of MMDR Act,1957.

 

3. It is a  punishable offence under section 21 (1) of MMDR Act,1957. If the lessee company fails to compound the offence under section 23(1) of MMDR Act, 1957, the District Collector will authorise a person to file a criminal complaint in the concerned police station against the lessee company for the offence committed under section 21(1) of MMDR Act,1957, as, it is a cognisable offence.

 

5. The mineral so raised (4,25,476 M.Ton) will be confiscated on behalf of the Government and if it has already been disposed off, the cost and royalty will be collected from the lessee company under section 21(5) of MMDR Act,1957.

 

6. Before confiscation, a show cause notice with a personal hearing will be given to the lessee company by the District Collector.

 

Thus as per the District Collector’s report, in respect of G.O. No. 78, the lessee company has violated the following.

 

1.  Violation of rule 22A of MCR,1960.

2. Violation of section 4(1A) of MMDR Act,1957.

3. All the above are punishable offence under section 21(1) of MMDR Act, 1957.

4. Violation of lease granting order condition

5. Violation of condition of MoEF Clearance.

6. Violation of rule 27(1K) of MCR,1960

7. Violation of rule 27(1)(i) and rule 27(1)(j) and rule 27(1)(l) of MCR, 1960.

8. Violation of rule 27(4) of MCR, 1960.

 

All the minerals so raised will be confiscated on behalf of government under section 21(5) of MMDR Act,1957. If the mineral so raised has already been disposed off, the cost of mineral and royalty will be collected from the lessee company.

 

In respect of violation of rule 27(1)(i) and 27(1)(j) and rule 27(1)(l) of MCR, 1960, the government will issue show cause notice to the lessee company and a personal hearing will  be given and if the reply is not convincing, the govt., will take action to cancel the mining lease and forfeit the security deposit.

 

In respect of other violations, the district collector will be directed to take appropriate action after issuing a show cause notice and a personal hearing and to confiscate the mineral on behalf of the government. In case, the lessee company  fails to compound the offence under section 23(1) of MMDR Act,1957,  the District Collector will authorise a competent person to a criminal complaint in  the concerned police station for violation of section 4(1) and 4(1A) of MMDR Act, 1957 which is punishable offence under section 21(1) of MMDR Act, 1957.

 

As per the environmental clearance letter issued by Govt., of India in letter No. J/11015/8/2005-IA-II(M) dated 26.5.2005 the MoEF has accords environmental clearance to the above said lessee for an annual production capacity of 6300 Ton per annum working in open cast  by manual method by way of scooping the raw garnet sand with shovel and blades without using any machinery. Drilling and blasting is not involved. Envisaged rated capacity of the mine is 7200 TPA (600 TPM). Working depth is about 30 cm. As per condition No. 2 of general condition no change in the calendar plan including excavation and quantum of garnet sand should be made. Whereas, in this case he has violated all the above conditions as mining activity is more than 4 meter depth instead of 30 cm and quantity also increased. Thus the lessee has violated not only conditions imposed by MoEF, but also violated the provisions of MMDR Act, 1957 and MC Rules, 1960.

 

Mining Lease granted to M/s.Indian Garnet Sand Company (P)Ltd in Poolancherri and Appanallur village in Musiri Taluk, Tiruchirappalli District in G.O.3D.No.79 Industries Department dated 16.8.2005 .

 

Report of the District Collector;

(i)                 In respect of mining lease granted in G.O.3D.No. 79 Industries Department dated 16.08.2005, the lessee company has mined and removed 22,04,410 M.T of ROM. The lessee company has paid royalty and obtained transport permit only for 39,000 M.T of ROM whereas they have mined and transported 8,11,330 M.T of ROM without paying Royalty and without obtaining transport permit.

(ii)          For the above said offence, action has to be taken as per section 21(1) of MMDR Act, 1957  1957 and the royalty and cost of the mineral  have to be levied and collected from the lessee company.

(iii)         It has been reported by the Executive Engineer, PWD, Ariyaru Division, Tiruchirappalli that the lessee company has mined and removed the ROM/Mineral for a depth of about 10-15 feet and thereby affection flow of water into the Eri . Already the Revenue Divisional Officer has been requested to take action. The Mining activity has caused hindrance to flow of water and it is a violation of lease deed condition. During the inspection conducted by the Revenue Divisional Officer, the public have complained about this problem. For violations and mining of mineral against the rules and acts, the District Collector has recommended  termination of mining lease.

(iv)         For processing the garnet bearing sand in  Appanallur factory 1354080 M.T of ROM has been mined and transported from the lease hold area without obtaining transport permits and thereby violated the rules.

(v)          According to the report of RDO, Musiri, they have damaged the banks of Eri and River, violating the condition in Part-III of the lease deed.

(vi)         They have illegally indulged mining in Non-lease hold area with heavy machines and hide the spot with thorny bushes and earth.

Views of CGM

(i)                   According to section 4(1A) of MMDR Act, 1957, 1957, no person shall transport or store or cause to be transported or stored any mineral otherwise than in accordance with the provisions of this Act and the rule made there under.

(ii)                The lessee company had mined and removed the ROM from the river bunds and thus violated the rules. Further they have utilised  heavy machineries for mining purposes and hide the same by spreading thorny bushes and earth over the area. The State Government have already issued a detailed guidelines vide Government letter No. 131 Industries (MMD.2)Department dated 13.06.2000 regarding  transportation  of ROM/garnet mineral  bearing sand so as to avoid illegal mining and also to avoid evasion of payment of royalty. Though the quantity of  22,04,410 M.T of ROM had been mined and transported from the lease hold and non-leasehold areas, they did not pay royalty and they did not obtain transport permits and Gate pass also for the entire quantity of mineral mined and removed as stipulated by the Government in their letter referred to above. Hence they have violated section 4(1A) of MMDR Act, 1957, 1957.

(iii)         The District Collector may be asked to issue a show cause notice and also give a personal hearing to the lessee company for the offence of illicit mining and transportation of the above said mineral.

(iv)         Moreover, it is an offence punishable under Section 21(1) of MMDR Act, 1957, 1957. Hence action has to be taken by the Government for the above said offence of illicit mining and transportation of the mineral according to section 21(1) and 21(5) of MMDR Act, 1957.

(v)          If the lessee company does not come forward to compound the offence under section 23(1) of MMDR Act, 1957,1957, the District Collector can prosecute the lessee company  under Section 22 of MMDR Act, 1957.

(vi)         Since it is a cognisable offence, if the lessee company fail to compound the offence, the District Collector can authorise any officer to file a complaint before the Police for such cognizance of the offence committed by the lessee company.

(vii)        They have mined for a depth of 5 meter in some places  and 3 meter in certain other areas. This is also a violation  of rule 22A of Mineral Concession Rules, 1960.

(viii)       In respect of G.O.3D.No.79 Industries Department dated 16.08.2005, the                 MOEF has specifically pointed out that the working is open cast by manual method by way of scooping the raw garnet sand with shovel and blades without using any machinery, drilling and blasting . Envisaged rated capacity of the mine is 24000 TPA (2000 TPM). Whereas,  the lessee company has removed 39,000 M.T of ROM/ Raw garnet sand by paying royalty and obtained transport permit.They have removed 21,65,410M.T of ROM/ garnet sand bearing material without paying royalty. The lessee has mined up to 3 to 5 meter depth whereas working depth is limited to 30 cm.  This is a clear-cut violation of MoEF’s conditions.

 

 

Violations pointed out by District Collector and CGM :-

 

1. Mining of mineral more than the permitted quantity in the approved mining plan – violation of rule 22A of Mineral Concession Rule.

 

2. Mining and transporting mineral without payment of royalty and without obtaining transport permit for a tune of 21,65,410  M.Ton – Violation of section 4(1A) of MMDR Act, 1957.

 

3. It is a  punishable offence under section 21 (1) of MMDR Act, 1957. If the lessee company fails to compound the offence under section 23(1) of MMDR Act, 1957, the District Collector will authorise a  person to file a criminal complaint in the concerned police station against the lessee company for the offence committed under section 21(1) of MMDR Act,1957,  as, it is a cognisable offence.

 

4. The mineral so raised (21,65,410 M.Ton) will be confiscated on behalf of  Government and if has disposed off, the cost and royalty will be recovered from the lessee under section 21(5) of MMDR Act, 1957.

 

6. Before confiscation, a show cause notice with a personal hearing will be given to the lessee company by the District Collector.

 

7. The lessee company has carried out  mining operation by damaging the banks of the river. Heavy vehicle using marks also available on that area. To hide this the lessee company has spread thorny bushes over the areas. The lessee company has carried out mining operation for a depth of 4 meter – these are violations of rule 22A of MCR, 1960 as well as violation of MoEF clearance.

 

As per the District Collector’s report, in respect of G.O. No. 79, the lessee company has violated the following.

 

1.  Rule 22A of MCR 1960.

2. Section 4(1) of MMDR Act, 1957, 1957

3. Section 4(1A) of MMDR Act, 1957.

4. All the above are punishable offence under section 21(1) of MMDR Act, 1957.

5. Violation of lease granting order condition

6. Violation of condition of MoEF Clearance.

7. Rule 27(1K) of MCR, 1960

8. Rule 27(1)(i) and rule 27(1)(j) and rule 27(1)(l) of MCR, 1960.

9. Rule 27(4) of MCR, 1960.

10. Violation of lease deed condition Part III covenant 5

 

All the minerals so raised will be confiscated on behalf of government under section 21(5) of MMDR Act, 1957. If the mineral so raised has already been  disposed off, the cost of mineral and royalty will be collected from the lessee.

 

In respect of violation of rule 27(1)(i) and 27(1)(j) and rule 27(1)(l) of MCR,  1960, government will take action under rule 27(4) of MCR, 1960 as recommended by the District Collector and COMMISSIONER OF GEOLOGY AND MINING. Govt., will issue a show cause notice to the lessee company and a personal hearing will also be given and if the reply is not convincing, the govt., will take suitable action to cancel the mining lease and forfeit the security deposit.

 

In respect of other violations, the district collector will be directed to take appropriate action after issuing a show cause notice and a personal hearing and to confiscate the mineral of the government. In case, the lessee fails to compound the offence under section 23(1) of MMDR Act, 1957, the district Collector will authorise a competent person to file a criminal complaint in the concerned police station for the violation of section 4(1A) of MMDR Act, 1957 which is punishable offence under section 21(1) of MMDR Act, 1957.

 

As per the environmental clearance letter issued by Govt., of India in letter No. J/11015/5/2005-IA-II(M) dated 26.5.2005 the MoEF has accorded environmental clearance to the above said lessee for an annual production capacity of 24000 Ton per annum working in open cast  by manual method by way of scooping the raw garnet sand with shovel and blades without using any machinery. Drilling and blasting is not involved. Envisaged rated capacity of the mine is 24000 TPA (2000 TPM). Working depth is about 30 cm. As per condition No. 2 of general condition no change in the calendar plan including excavation and quantum of garnet sand should be made. Whereas, in this case the lessee company  has violated all the above conditions as the mining activity is more than 4 meter depth instead of 30 cm and quantity also has increased. Thus the lessee company has violated not only the conditions imposed by MoEF, but also has violated the provisions of MMDR Act, 1957 and MCRules, 1960.

 

Already the lessee  company carried out mining operation by violating MoEF clearance. Hence the water flow in the area has been badly affected. In this connection already the PWD, Water Resources Origanisation, Aryaru Basin divisional Engineer written letters to the District Collector on 1.10.2009 and 19.2.10. This is a proof that the lessee company has violated the lease deed condition and has not fulfilled the condition as such.

 

 

 Mining Lease granted to M/s.Indian Garnet Sand company (P) Ltd in Valavanthi village,Musiri Taluk,Tiruchirappalli District in G.O.No.80 Industries Department dated 16.8.2005

 

Report of the District Collector:

 

(i)           In respect of G.O.3D.No. 80 Industries Department dated 16.08.2005, the lessee company has mined and removed 7,05,778 of ROM. Similarly they have mined and removed 3,27,429 M.T of ROM from the non leasehold area. Further it has been reported that 65,624 M.T of ROM was mined and removed from the private patta lands also  by the lessee company.

(ii)          The lessee company has obtained transport permit  only for a quantity of 78,000 M.T of ROM whereas they have mined to the tune of 11,33,653 M.T of ROM/garnet mineral bearing sand and transported the material as it is done from the leasehold areas and  obtained transport permits.

(iii)         The lessee company has mined in the river banks without leaving necessary safety distance and thereby violated the lease deed condition Part III, covenant 5. Due to this agriculture will be badly affected and hence the District Collector has requested to take action for termination of the lease.

Views of the CGM;

(i)            The lessee company has violated the rule 22A of the Mineral Concession Rules, 1960 as well as Section 4(1A) of MMDR Act, 1957, 1957 which is a punishable offence under Section 21(1) of MMDR Act, 1957.

(ii)           According to section 4(1A) of MMDR Act,1957,1957 ,no person shall transport or store or cause to be transported or stored any mineral, otherwise than in accordance with the provisions of this Act and the rule made there under.

(iii)         The State Government have already issued a detailed guidelines in their letter No.131 Industries (MMD.2) Department dated 13.06.2000 regarding transportation of ROM/mineral sand so as to avoid illegal mining and also to avoid evasion of payment of royalty. Though the quantity of 12,11,653 M.T of ROM/garnet mineral bearing sand had been mined and transported from the lease hold and non-leasehold areas including from private patta lands , they paid royalty only for 78,000 M.T of ROM/garnet mineral bearing sand. For the balance quantity of 11,33,653 M.T of ROM ,they did not pay royalty and obtain the transport permits and Gate pass  as stipulated by the Government in their letter referred to above. Hence they have violated section 4(1) and 4(1A) of the MMDR Act, 1957, 1957.

(iv)         They have illegally mined  and transported from the leasehold and non-lease hold areas including private patta lands  to the tune of 11,33,653 M.T of ROM/garnet mineral bearing sand which is also a violation of section 4(1) of MMDR Act,1957, 1957 and is a punishable offence under section 21(1) of MMDR Act, 1957.

(v)           Hence action has to be taken for above said mineral of 11,33, 653 M.T of ROM by the  Government according to Section 21(1), 21(4) and 21(5) of MMDR Act, 1957, 1957 and the District collector  may be instructed accordingly.

(vi)         The District Collector may be asked to issue a showcause notice and also give a personal hearing to the lessee company for the illicit mining and transportation of the above said  mineral.  Since it has been reported by the District Collector that illicit mining has been carried out in the private patta land also, the District Collector may be requested to identify the owners of such patta lands and proceed against them also.

(vii)        Moreover, it is an offence punishable under Section 21(1) of MMDR Act, 1957, 1957.  If the lessee company does not come forward to compound the offence under Section 23(1) of MMDRAct,1957, the District Collector may be asked to prosecute the lessee company under Section 22 of MMDR Act, 1957.

(viii)       Since it is a cognisable offence, if the lessee company fail to compound the offence, the District Collector may be asked to authorise any officer to file a complaint before the Police for the cognizance of the offence.

(ix)         They have mined for a depth of more than 4 meter in some places and 3 meter in certain other areas. This is also a violation of rule 22A of Mineral Concession Rules, 1960 and also MoEF’s conditions.

(x)           According to the report of Revenue Divisional Officer, Musiri, they have damaged the bank of the Eri and the bank of the river which are violations of lease deed condition under part III covenant 5 of the lease agreement executed with the District Collector.

(xi)         In respect of G.O.3D.No.80Industries Department dated 16.08.2005, the MOEF has specifically pointed out that the working is open cast by manual method by way of scooping the raw garnet sand with shovel and blades without using any machinery, drilling and blasting . Envisaged rated capacity of the mine is 9000 TPA (750 TPM). Whereas,  the lessee company has removed 78,000 M.T of ROM by paying royalty and obtained transport permit. They have removed 11,33,653 M. Ton of ROM/ garnet sand bearing material without paying royalty. The lessee company has mined 2 to 4 meter depth whereas working depth is limited to 30 cm which is a violation of MoEF’s conditions as stated supra.

 

Violations pointed out by District Collector and CGM :-

 

1. Mining of mineral more than the permitted quantity in the approved mining plan – violation of rule 22A of Mineral Concession Rule.

 

2. Mining and transporting mineral without payment of royalty and without obtaining transport permit for a tune of 6,27,778  M.Ton – Violation of section 4(1A) of MMDR Act, 1957.

 

3. Illegal mining and transportation of 3,92,429 M.Ton from the non lease hold area – Violation section 4(1) of MMDR Act, 1957.

 

4. This too is a  punishable offence under section 21 (1) of MMDR Act, 1957. If the lessee company fails to compound the offence under section 23(1) of MMDR Act, 1957 the District Collector will authorise a person to file a criminal complaint in the concerned police station against the lessee company for the offence committed under section 21(1) of MMDR Act, 1957 as, it is a cognisable offence.

 

5. The mineral so raised (10,20,207 M.Ton) can be confiscated to Government and if it is disposed off, the cost and royalty may be collected from the lessee under section 21(5) of MMDR Act.

 

6. Before confiscation, a show cause notice with a personal hearing will be given to the lessee company by the District Collector.

 

7. The lessee has carried out mining operation by damaging the banks of the river. Imprints of usage of heavy duty vehicle have been reported in the leasehold areas. To hide this the lessee company has spread thorny bushes over the area. The lessee company has carried out mining operation for a depth of 4 meter – these are all violations of rule 22A of MCR, 1960 as well as violation of MoEF clearance.

 

As per the District Collector’s report, in respect of G.O. No. 80, the lessee company has violated the following.

 

1.  Violation of rule 22A of MCR, 1960

2. Violation of section 4(1) of MMDR Act, 1957.

3. Violation of section 4(1A) of MMDR Act, 1957.

4. All the above are punishable offence under section 21(1) of MMDR Act, 1957.

5. Violation of lease granting order condition

6. Violation of condition of MoEF Clearance.

7. Violation of rule 27(1K) of MCR, 1960

8. Violation of rule 27(1)(i) and rule 27(1)(j) and rule 27(1)(l) of MCR, 1960.

9. Violation of rule 27(4) of MCR, 1960.

10. Violation of lease deed condition part III Covenant 5 – due to this agriculture will be badly affected.

 

All the minerals so raised will be confiscated on behalf of  government under section 21(5) of MMDR Act, 1957. If the mineral so raised has already been disposed off, the cost of mineral and royalty will be collected from the lessee.

 

In respect of violation of rule 27(1)(i) and 27(1)(j) and rule 27(1)(l) of MCR, 1960,  government will take action under rule 27(4) of MCR, 1960  as recommended by the District Collector and COMMISSIONER OF GEOLOGY AND MINING. The Govt., will issue a show cause notice to the lessee company  and a personal hearing will also be given and if the reply is not convincing, the govt., will take suitable action to cancel the mining lease and forfeit  the security deposit.

 

In respect of other violations, the District collector will be directed to take appropriate action after issuing a show cause notice and a personal hearing and to confiscate the mineral on behalf of  the government. In case, the lessee company fails to compound the offence under section 23(1) of MMDR Act, 1957, the District Collector will authorise a competent person to file a criminal complaint to the concerned police station for the violation of section 4(1A) of MMDR Act, 1957 which is a punishable offence under section 21(1) of MMDR Act, 1957.

 

As per the environmental clearance letter issued by Govt., of India in letter No. J/11015/6/2005-IA-II(M) dated 26.5.2005 the MoEF has accorded environmental clearance to the above said lessee for an annual production capacity of 9000 Ton per annum working in open cast  by manual method by way of scooping the raw garnet sand with shovel and blades without using any machinery. Drilling and blasting is not involved. Envisaged rated capacity of the mine is 9000 TPA (750 TPM). Working depth is about 30 cm. As per condition No. 2 of general condition no change in the calendar plan including excavation and quantum of garnet sand should be made. Whereas, in this case he has violated all the above conditions as mining activity is more than 4 meter depth instead of 30 cm and quantity also increased. Thus the lessee company has violated not only conditions imposed by MoEF, but also has violated the provisions of MMDR Act, 1957 and the MCRules, 1960.

 

The lessee company has carried out  mining operation by violating MoEF clearance. Hence the agriculture activity has been badly affected.

 

5.     Common Violation made by the lessee in all the above leases in respect of MMDR Act, 1957 and Rules

 

1.  No weigh bridge is available in the lease hold area.

2. No name board and boundary stone erected in the lease hold area – Violation of rule 27(1)(g) of MCR, 1960

3. The road side river banks, check dams all are damaged – Violation of rule 27(1)(h) and 27(1)(k) of MCR, 1960.

4. Did not keep and produce accounts showing the quantity of all minerals obtained and dispatched from the mine etc – Violation of rule 27(1)(i) of MCR, 1960.

5. Did not produce the records – Violation of rule 27(1)(j) of MCR, 1960.

6. Did not allowed the officers authorised by the government to enter upon and inspection – violation of rule 27(1)(l) of MCR, 1960.

7. The District Collector has specifically recommended that the employees of the lessee company prevented the Revenue Divisional Officer, Musiri and other inspecting officers from enter upon and inspect the leases and recommended to take action under rule 27(4) of MCR, 1960.

8. Hence as suggested by the District Collector and CGM action will be taken under rule 27(4) of MCR, 1960 for determination of the above said 5 leases and forfeiture of the security deposit to the government under rule 27(4) of MCR, 1960.

 

6.     Common Violation made by the lessees in all the above leases in respect of Environmental clearance conditions

(i) No green belt development as per the EIA clearance in the lease

hold area.

(ii) No Check dam or siltation bonds constructed – violation of

condition no.(ii).

(i)            Only two times per year monitoring of ground water level is been carried out instead of the stipulated  4 times per year.

(ii)          Suitable conservation measures to augment ground water resources in the area shall be planned and implemented in consultation with Regional Director, CGWB.

(iii)         Suitable rain water harvesting measures on long term basis shall be planned and implemented in consultation with Regional Director, CGWB.

(iv)         Environmental laboratory should be established with adequate number and type of pollution monitoring and analysing equipments in consultation with State Pollution Control Board.

 

In respect of item nos. (ii), (iv), (v) and (vi), it has been reported that a corrigendum on modification of conditions have been issued by MOEF. The District Collector in her report has mentioned that there is no communication either from the State Govt., or from the Ministry of Environment and Forests, Govt. of India  about the said corrigendum. She had further suggested that government may seek clarification from the concerned department whether the corrigendum has been issued after following all the procedures such as, public hearing recommendation of the State committee and state government etc.

 

As per the lessee company’s reply to the Pollution Control board it has bee reported that such monitoring of ground water resources board and also monitoring of ambient air quality were carried out by Manonmanium Sundarnar University, Tirunelveli – Hence Govt., Industries department will  write a letter to higher education department to inform whether government Higher Education department has permitted the said Manonmaniuam Sundaranar university, Tirunelveli to carryout the above said works to the private parties and if yes, Industries Department will request for a copy of the government approval order. If not , the Higher Education secretary will be requested to initiate suitable action against the concerned person for facilitating such illegal activities of the said lessee companies in two lease hold areas which are reported to be completely rocky and devoid of any sand deposit. Hence, without obtaining necessary government permission, if any person from the said university is found to have helped to the lessee companies  for their illegal activities, it will also to be considered as an offence. Hence the Govt., in Higher Education department will requested to enquire into this matter and furnish a report thereon.

 

7.   As per the above said District Collector’s report, the lessee company have obtained transport permits only for a total quantity of 2,70,334 M.T of ROM  whereas the above two lessee company  have mined and transported for a total quantity of 42,08,543 M.T of ROM. Thus a quantity of 39, 38,199 M.T of ROM has been illegally mined and transported by the above said two lessee company which is violation of section 4(1) and 4(1A) of MMDR Act, 1957. Action will  be taken by the Government against the two lessee company for the offence of illicit mining and transportation of 39,38,199 M.T of ROM/garnet mineral bearing sand.

 

The details of quantity of mineral mined and removed from the leasehold and non leasehold areas including private patta lands reported by the District Collector are furnished hereunder:

                Sl.

No.

G.O.NO AND VILLAGE

QUANTITY  OF MINERAL (ROM) PLANNED AS PER MINING PLAN

QUANTITY FOR WHICH TRANSPORT PERMIT OBTAINED

 

TOTAL QUAN-TITY OF MINERAL (ROM) MINED AND TRANSPORTED

EXCESS QUANTITY OF MINERAL  (ROM) MINED AND TRANSPORTED AS PER MINING PLAN

TOTAL QUANTITY  OF MINERAL  (ROM)  MINED AND REMOVED ILLICITELY

1 75-SITTALARAI AND THUMBALAM

12,882

89,500

3,03,160

2,90,278

2,13,660

2 80-VALAVANTHI

45,693

78,000

12,11,653

11,65,960

11,33,653

3 79-POOLANCHERI AND APPANALLUR

1,13,306

39,000

22,04,410

20,91,104

21,65,410

4 78-MAVILIPPATTI AND PAITHAMPARI

14,613

63,844

4,89,320

4,74,707

4,25,476

TOTAL

1,86,494

2,70,344

42,08,543

40,22,049

39,38,199

5 77-ANJALAM

42,301

51,500

 

8.  Based on the advice of the higher officials, in order to find out the storage of the illegally mined materials, the inspecting officers have inspected all the factories of the lessee company in which the minerals have been processed and stored by the lessee company. They have found the following materials in the factories:-

 

Sl.

No.

Factory / Village Name

ROM in M.Ton

Semi Processed in M.Ton

Waste sand in M.Ton

Finished Garnet in M.Ton

Middlings in M.Ton

Total (except waste)

1 Oorakarai

79,794

2 Mullipadi

6,01,707

60,785

24,000

3 Soorampatti

4,15,805

2,04,360

4 Thumbalam

87,490

5 Kenipallam Godown

12,152

6 Kolakudi

1,37,456

7 Appanalloor

5,683

462

45,258

Total

10,97,306

3,03,566

2,28,360

462

45,258

14,46,592

 

 

(i)        According to rule 27(4) MMDR Act,1957, 1957,if the lessee does not allow entry or inspection under clause (i), (j), (l) of sub rule (1), the State Government shall give notice in writing to the lessee company requiring them to show cause within such time as may be specified in the notice why the lease should not be determined and their security deposit forfeited and if the lessee company fail to show cause within the above said time to the satisfaction of the State Government, the State Government may determine the lease and forfeit the whole or part of the security deposit.

(ii)      As per the District Collector’s report the lessee companies did not produce the accounts and records as required under rules and they have prevented the inspecting officers from entry and inspection of the mines. Thus it is a fit case to take action under rule 27(4) of Mineral Concession Rules, 1960 against the five mining leases as recommended by the District Collector and Commissioner of Geology and Mining and Govt., has decided to determine the above said 5 mining leases under rule 27(4) of MCR,1960.

 

(iii)     The Assistant Executive Engineer, Public Works Department, Water Resources organisation (WRO), Ariyaru Basin sub division, Thuraiyoor has reported that all the areas granted under lease are Odai and river poramboke. In the above said lease hold areas,  they have permitted to mine to a  maximum depth  30cm to 50 cm whereas they have mined up to 300 cm and they have mined under the Mathagu of PWD Eri also. Hence the water could not flow into the Eri. Likewise the two sides of the banks of Poolancheri have been excavated for mining garnet sand. Hence there is a possibility of damage being caused to the banks during flood season.

(iv)     The Public Works Department authority has further reported that in the same village in S.Nos. 145 and 102 the check dam has been completely damaged by the lessee company and in Thumbalam village, since the entire quantity of sand has been excavated in S.No. 206 and 207, the course of flow water in the Odai has changed thereby affecting the nearby lands. The check dam in S.No. 206 has been  damaged. In all the odai areas , some of the Vari banks have been damaged by the lessee company. Hence the water resources of the nearby villages will be greatly affected. The Public Works Department authority has further suggested that suitable action has to be taken to prevent further Garnet sand mining in these areas granted in the above said Government Orders.

 

(v)      Based on the opinion of the Public Works Department ,the District Collector  has suggested to take action for termination of the above leases  so as  to protect the water resources of the nearby village people.

(vi)     Since the lessee company, M/s. Indian Garnet Sand Company (P) Ltd and Southern Enterprises have violated the Acts and Rules  stipulated for scientific mining in a workman like a manner and also  the  lease deed conditions, MoEF conditions, etc the District Collector has recommended termination of the above said mining leases under section 4A of MMDR Act, 1957. But, since State government has empowered to  determine the lease under rule 27(4) of MCR, 1960,  for the violations pointed out by the District Collector as well as COMMISSIONER OF GEOLOGY AND MINING, action will be taken to determine the leases invoking rule 27(4) of MCR, 1960, if the lessee companies fail to furnish convincing reply to the government.

(vii)    The District Collector has also reported that the lessee company have obtained the Gate Pass I only as per the guidelines issued by the Government vide their letter no.131 Industries Department dated 13.06.2000.They have not obtained the Gate Pass2 and 3 which is a violation of the instructions issued by the Government.

(viii)  The District Collector has requested to take action against the lessee company as per rule 27(4) of Mineral Concession Rules, 1960 since they have not produced the records that has to be maintained statutorily by mining lessees for verification at the time of inspection by the officials. Further they have prevented the inspection authorities to conduct inspection of the leasehold areas. The District Collector has reported that she has already addressed the Police Department to take action against the staff of the lessee company. The Home secretary will be addressed in this connection to give suitable instruction to the DGP to bring the culprits Thiru.Periyasamy, S/o. Karuppannan and Thiru.Sasikumar, S/o. Veeraiah supervisors of the above two mining lessees  to justice and also to investigate as to who are all behind the above two persons for their criminal action and to bring them also before court of law for preventing public servants from discharging their official duty.

(ix)     The District Collector has reported that during the course of inspection conducted by the team the local villages are reported to have come in large numbers and complained about illegal mining carried out by the lessee company.

 

9. The District Environment Engineer, TNPCB, Tiruchirapalli has reported the following facts;

  1.               i.            The conditions of raising green belt in all the mining lease areas have not been complied with except in Sittilarai village.
  2.             ii.            The condition of construction of check dams, siltation ponds, drains etc., as stipulated has not been carried out.  However, these conditions are reported to have been deleted.
  3.            iii.            Regular monitoring of ground water level and the quality should be carried out four times a year in a manner suggested by MoEF,Government of India.  This work is reported to have been carried out by the  Manonmaniam Sundaranar University, Tirunelveli half yearly once i.e. during January 2011 and June 2011.
  4.            iv.            Suitable conservation measures to augment ground water resources and the rain water harvesting measures on long term basis should be planned and implemented in consultation with the Regional Director, Central Ground Water Board. This condition is also reported to have been deleted.
  5.             v.            The condition of establishment of Environmental Laboratory in consultation with the State Pollution Control Board in a manner prescribed by MoEF is also reported to have been deleted

 

10. As per the EIA Notification, the project proponent has to submit the application to State Pollution Control Board and a public hearing to be conducted by publishing in the Newspaper and after considering the objections, the State Government’s view will be forwarded to Government of India. Accordingly the Government of India will issue clearance under EIA Notification. The following clearance has been issued to the lessee company by following the above said procedure.

(i)        For G.O. 75, Govt., of India, MoEF letter No. J11015/03 /2005-IA.11(M) dated 26.5.05.

(ii)      For G.O. 77, Govt., of India, MoEF letter No. J11015/7/ 2005-IA.11(M) dated 26.5.05.

(iii)     For G.O. 78, Govt., of India, MoEF letter No. J11015/08/ 2005-IA.11(M) dated 26.5.05.

(iv)     For G.O. 79, Govt., of India, MoEF letter No. J11015/05/ 2005-IA.11(M) dated 26.5.05.

(v)      For G.O. 80, Govt., of India, MoEF letter No. J11015/06/ 2005-IA.11(M) dated 26.5.05

 

11. With regard to the conditions incorporated in the above said Govt. Of India letters, the Pollution Control Board has informed that a corrigendum has been issued subsequently amending the conditions to the above said letters. Hence it is proposed that the Government will write a letter to the Ministry of Environment and Forests as well as Pollution Control Board and the Director of Environment to inform whether public hearing had been conducted for issuing such amendment? Whether the views of PWD and the State Pollution Control Board, Director of Environment, Central Ground Water Board and views of the State Government and State Environmental committee have been obtained before issuing such as amendment? Whether the above departments recommendations and conditions suggested by them have been  incorporated in the amendment letter to be obtained from the MoEF, Regional office, Bangalore and State Pollution Control Board, Guindy, Chennai.

 

12. Moreover the Pollution Control Board authorities have informed that the ground water monitoring was done by Manonmaniam Sundarnar University. Therefore it is proposed that the Government will seek a clarification from the Department of Higher Education whether the Government has given any permission to the above said university to undertake such a ground water monitoring work in respect of private parties.

13. The District Collector has already written a letter to the Superintendent of Police to keep all the seized materials under the safe custody of Police Department until further instructions from the Government and she has already given instructions not to issue transport permits in respect of areas in Valasiramani, Juambumadai and Konappanpatti lease areas as per the observation made by the Assistant Executing Engineer, PWD –WRO. Based on the report of PWD, the District Collector has requested to take action for termination of the above said leases at Government level. The COMMISSIONER OF GEOLOGY AND MINING has suggested that Govt., may issue suitable directions to the District Collector to monitor the action taken by the District police officials regarding the safe custody of the seized materials and to prevent illegal transportation of the material to other places as the seized minerals belong to the State Govt. and they are the properties of the Govt.

 

14. The District Collector has reported as per the statement I that a quantity of 39.38,119 M.T of ROM have been removed without the valid transport permits . District Collector has further reported that a quantity of 10,97,306 M.T of ROM, 30,35,66 M.T of Semi-processed  sand ,462 M.T of Garnet sand and 45258 M.T of Midlings with Garnet sand are found to be available.

15. The above comprehensive report of the District Collector and other individual reports furnished by the various officials of the District will clearly establish that the lessee company have violated certain general and  specific conditions imposed by MoEF.  The lessee company have also mined quantity of Garnet bearing sand in excess of what has been permitted in the approved mining plan as well as permitted in the Ministry of Environment clearance letter. It is also important to verify the corrigendum whether it has been issued in accordance with law.

 

16. The Commissioner of Geology and Mining has  further recommended that various reasons attributed for determination of all the mining leases granted to the above said two companies  have been accepted by government and action will be initiated for determination of lease under rule 27(4) of Mineral Concession Rules, 1960.

17. Out of the excess quantity to the tune of 39,38,199 MT of ROM/Garnet bearing sand illicitly mined and transported, the lessee company  have unlawfully stored in various places to a  total quantity of  14,46,592 MT of ROM in different catogories. The entire seized quantity of 14,46,592 M.Ton ROM will be confiscated by the Government under section 21(4A) of MMDR Act, 1957, 1957 after issuing a show cause notice and giving a personal hearing to the lessee company. The District Collector will be asked to dispose off  the seized material in public auction after observing all the necessary formalities connected therewith.  As regards the already disposed off illegally mined material of 24,91,607 MT of ROM /Garnet mineral bearing sand, since the lessee company have disposed of the mineral, it’s cost and the royalty will be recovered from the lessee company under section 21(5) of MMDR Act, 1957, 1957 by taking the company’s previous sale prices at the sale basis so as to avoid any dispute from the lessee company. The seized raw material, garnet, semi-processed, tailings, waste material also will also be sold in public auction by adopting the same procedure. As regards the impounded raw sand containing Garnet, semi processed sand, processed sand, midlings to the total quantity of 14,46,592 MT the same procedure as suggested above will be followed.

18. Out of the total illegally mined and transported quantity of 39,38,199 M.Ton only 14,46,592 M.Ton alone available in various places. Hence the lessee company have disposed out 24,91,607 MT of ROM  illegally mined materials to various sources without proper account.  Hence at present, the Government cannot confiscate 39, 38,199 M.T of ROM.  But the Government can confiscate only the available   14, 46,592 M.T of ROM.  For the already disposed of  quantity of 24,91,607 M.T of ROM, as per section 21(5) of MMDR Act, 1957 the cost of  mineral and the royalty will be collected from the lessee company. While disposing them of by means of public auction, it will be ensured that  the highest bidder remits in addition to the bidding price, royalty and the applicable VAT in force at the time of auction for fetching best possible revenue to the state exchequer.

19. As regards the suggestion of the District Collector that royalty of the cost of the minerals to be recovered from the said lessee company in respect of excess quantity of Garnet bearing sand mined and disposed off under Section 21(5) of MMDR Act, 1957, 1957, it is informed that the above suggestion has been accepted since it not only satisfies Section 21(5) of MMDR Act, 1957, 1957 but also it is in accordance with Rule 22A of Mineral Concession Rules, 1960. In the light of the fact that the mining lessees have not obtained a statutory gate pass and transport permit from the department which is a violation of section 4(1A) of MMDR Act, 1957, 1957 and also the provisions of the Rule 22(A)(2) of MCR, 1960 they will be treated only as an illicitly mined one and treated as per the provision of the said  Act and Rules.

20. The Government will write a letter to the Home Secretary to instruct DGP to constantly monitor the action taken by the District Police officials against the staff of the lessee company and also to identify the other persons of the lessee company who may have instigated their staff members to prevent the District officials and more so the Revenue Divisional Officer, Musiri from discharging the official duties which is punishable under IPC and bring them to justice.

21.   As per PWD official’s report, mining in the lease hold areas of stream bed and also in river bed and Eries have affected the water resources and the course of flow water thereby affecting the entire irrigation system in the villages as well as drinking water sources, as recommended by the Collector and COMMISSIONER OF GEOLOGY AND MINING, the Govt., have accepted it and accordingly  will take action to determine the mining lease by invoking rule 27(4) of MCR, 1960 and also to the grounds of other various violations committed by the lessee companies.

22.  In respect of the suggestions made by the District Collector it is further informed that various  reasons attributed for determination of all the mining leases granted to the above said two companies will be accepted and action will be initiated for determination of lease accordingly.

 

23. There is yet another statutory option of invoking the provisions of Rule 27(4) of MCR, 1960 wherein it has been articulated that if the lessee does not allow entry or inspection under clause ( i, j or l ) of  sub rule 1 the State Govt shall give notice in writing to the lessee requiring him to show cause within such time as may be specified in the notice why the lease should not be determined and the security deposit forfidder and if the lessee fails to show cause within the aforesaid time to the satisfaction of the State Govt, the state Govt may determine the lease.

24.  The District Collector has already initiated action not to issue transport permits to the lessee company in respect of mining leases granted to them until further orders from the Government and also kept all the seized material in various places under police custody. As suggested by the Commissioner of Geology and Mining, the District Collector  will be asked to be maintain the status-quo and constantly monitor the same.

 

25. As advised by Commissioner of Geology and Mining, the Govt. will issue suitable advisory to the District Collector, Tiruchirapalli to authorize Revenue officials /  Police officials to take possession of all the seized material lying scattered in different places including factories of the lessee company under proper  mahajer /Athatchi since the seized materials belong to the State Govt. property.

 

26. The Violation of conditions of MoEF clearance will be informed to Govt., of India, MoEF and request them to withdraw the clearance letter as, mining in this area will affect agriculture activities as well as, water flow of the near by villages as suggested by PWD, WRO officials.

 

(a) In this connection the District Collector will be instructed to issue a show cause notice and also accord a personal hearing to the lessee company before taking any action as indicated above for the offence of holding unaccounted stock of 14,46,592 MT at various factory sites as shown in the table above.

 

(a)  As regards the study reported to have been conducted by the Manonmaniam Sundarnar University, the Commissioner of Geology and Mining has suggested to the Govt., to seek a clarification from the Dept. of Higher education whether the Govt., has given any permission to the above said University to undertake such a ground water monitoring work in respect of private parties. The above suggestion is accepted by government.

 

(c) It may therefore be discerned that when certain statutory formalities have been notified to be followed while incorporating certain conditions to be fulfilled by the lessee company, it becomes all the more important to follow the same procedure while resorting to deletion of those conditions also. Therefore it is considered necessary to call for the following details from the Ministry of Environment and Forests.

 

i)     On which date, the application for corrigendum has been submitted by the lessee company?

 

ii) On which date the paper publication has been done for public hearing to   amend the conditions?

 

iii) On which date public hearing for amending the conditions have been conducted?

 

iv) Which are all the officers who have conducted the public hearing? What is the result of the public hearing for amending the conditions?

 

v) What are the remarks of the State Govt., and the State pollution control board and also the Director of Environment in amending the conditions?

 

vi) On which meeting of the National Environmental Impact Assessment Agency or any other agency the issue was discussed and decided upon to relax the condition. All the above details have got to be clarified by writing a letter to the Ministry of Environment and Forest, Govt., of India.

 

d) In this connection it is stated that  since minerals belong to the state and the seized materials are the properties of the Govt., this department will take up this matter with the Home department for issuance of such advisory to the District Collector as requested by the Commissioner of Geology and Mining. Similarly the Home department will be requested to issue instructions to the Superintend of Police, Trichirappally to immediately register a case against not only the staff of the lessee company but also the Directors of the lessee company themselves for their misconduct against the inspecting team of Govt., officials if not done already as per the request of the District Collector.

 

e) The status-quo may be asked to be maintained by the District Collector, Trichirappalli with regard to i) Stoppage of mining and other related activities by the lessee company in their leasehold areas and ii) non issue of transport permits to the lessee company by the District officials of the Dept. of Geology and Mining until further instructions from the Govt. in this regard.

 

f) As per the suggestion of the Commissioner of Geology and Mining the final report of the District Collector together with the individual reports of the various team members of the District Officials along with the remarks of the Commissioner of Geology and Mining and the action ordered to be taken by the Govt., on the various suggestions and recommendations narrated above are presented to Madurai bench of the Honourable Madras High Court on the above lines since the whole inspection by the team of officials has been caused to be conducted by virtue of an interim order dated 9.2.2010 of the said court in W.P.MD No. 175/2010 and the Honourable High Court as already called for an interim report thereon. Govt., therefore inform to the Honourable High Court that the Govt., has decided to take the following action against the above two lessee companies.

 

1)  Levy of royalty and recovery of the cost of the mineral for the unauthorised mining, removal and disposal quantity of 24,91,607 M.Ton and under section 21(5) of MMDR Act, 1957.

2)  Seizure of the accumulated stock available at various places including factories for a quantity of 14,46,592 M.Ton under section 21(4) of MMDR Act, 1957 and confiscation of the stocks under section 21(5) of MMDR Act, 1957.

3)   Disposal of all the unaccounted various categories of seized material  in public Auction .

4)  Termination of all the leases for the reasons such as non availability of the mineral occurrence in two lease hold areas , violation of the lease deed conditions, MoEF’s conditions, non compliance of the statutory provisions of the Acts and Rules and above all damages caused to the Govt. structures in the stream course , Eri bed and bunds, etc thereby affecting the water source to the Agriculture, drinking water, to the surrounding villages as, recommended by the PWD, WRO officials as well as District Collector and COMMISSIONER OF GEOLOGY AND MINING.

5) Initiate criminal action against the lessee company as well as against the staff, representatives of the lessee company for the act of preventing the Govt., officials from discharging their official duties.

 

27. In the light of the facts exhaustively discussed and enumerated above, I am to request you to submit the above facts before the Madurai bench of Honourable Madras High Court as the final report containing the findings and the decision of Govt. in an appropriate manner as per legal procedure specifically informing the Honourable High Court that the State Govt. is ready to carryout  such further directions and orders as may be issued by the Honourable High Court in this connection against the said two lessee companies in enforcing the majesty of Rule of law as directed by the Honourable High Court.

 

Secretary

Industries Department

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The above original letter can be obtained under RTI Act from the Public Information Officer, Industries Department, Secretariate, Govt., of Tamilnadu, Chennai.

 

 

 

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