DMO imposes Rs 14 lakh penalty for illegal mining

Excelsior Correspondent

KATHUA, Nov 24: Acting swiftly on complaints of illegal mining lodged by local people residing along Mager Khad, District Mineral Officer Kathua Rajinder Singh along with mining guards rushed to the spot and captured the violators.
During action, a JCB machine and tipper were seized besides a penalty of over Rs 14 lakh was imposed for illegal digging and dumping. The huge sum of penalty was calculated from the large number of pits and excavated material dumped on the corner of the Khad.
The area of excavation was also measured by the officials of the Mining Department and found over 5000 MT nallah muck lifted from the spot thereby resulting in large number of pits and trenches in the Khad with visible loss to exchequer.
Geology and Mining Department has kept both vehicle and excavator after seizure as per the rules in the custody of police post at Hatli Morh till realization of penalty from violators.
The Deputy Commissioner, Kathua, Rahul Pandey has already instructed the Mining Department to remain vigilant to curb illegal mining activities and impose heavy penalties on the violators and miners so that they could not indulge in illegal mining practices.
It is pertinent to mention that local people have also widely appreciated the recent move of Mining Department and district administration in month-long retention of five Punjab based dumpers involved in illegal transportation of minerals from Ravi river in night hours.