As per the drive initiated by the newly formed Enforcement Directorate, Mining, against illegal mining, Amritsar (Rural) Police has launched a major crackdown on illegal sand mining in the district.
RN Dhoke, Enforcement Director, Mining, Punjab, issued the directive that illegal mining be stopped forthwith. He had also sent a letter to Amritsar (Rural) Police regarding the authorized mining sites in the district and conditions set down for mining operations, including the requirement of physical demarcation of mining sites.
Specific information was received by Amritsar (Rural) Police of large scale illegal mining being conducted along the banks of Ravi river in the area of vill. Kassowal, PS Ramdas, Amritsar (Rural), on 30 April, 2021. Acting immediately on the inputs, teams of Amritsar (Rural) Police launched large scale raids of the target site.
The raids unearthed a systematic, large scale illegal mining operation being conducted on the banks of the Ravi river. The raid resulted in the recovery of 9 trucks, 4 tractor trolleys, 1 JCB and 1 pokline from the site. Two accused – Ranjit Singh s/o Satnam Singh r/o vill. Teja, Gurdaspur and Daljit Singh s/o Harpal Singh r/o vill. Bahadurgarh Jandiya, Bathinda were also arrested from the spot. Raids are being conducted to arrest the remaining absconding accused.
Simultaneously, FIR under sections 379, 420, 468, 471, 120B Indian Penal Code, 21 Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) Act, 26 NGT Act, PS Ramdas has been registered in this context and the accused arrested.
“Investigation conducted so far has revealed that the raided site was completely unauthorized. Further, contrary to the orders of the mining department, serious procedural compliance failures were noted at the site. There was absence of any physical demarcation at the site. Further, no documents or government slips were produced by the contractor or their workers at the site”, said SSP Amritsar (Rural), Dhruv Dahiya.
During investigation of the site by the raiding team, large mounds of sand were found at the river banks, as well as in the nearby hinterland area. Provisions of the NGT Act have also been included in the FIR to ensure strict legal action on the accused for any relevant contravention of its provisions, said the SSP.
Further, SHO PS Ramdas has been suspended for his negligence in effectively curbing illegal mining.