Despite the April 2005 Supreme Court order to close the illegal mining in Aravali Hills in Rajashthan, as many as 52 mines are continuously functioning in the region. The Ministry of Environment and Forests has asked the Rajasthan government to explain why the illegal mining is still going on despite apex court ban on mining in the region.
According to the report, the licenses for most of these illegal mines were given the necessary renewal permission after SC ban. The court had specifically told the state government not to renew the licenses of those mines. The Ministry of Environment and Forests had even sent letters to the Chief Secretary and Principal Secretary in Rajasthan to issue orders for closing down the mining operations in the region.
Chief Conservator of Forests (Central) N C Bahuguna asked why a certain person has been given the permission to mine an area of 8.45 hectare in Tonk district. The work in the said mine should be immediately stopped after the Supreme Court. The ministry has asked the Rajasthan government to provide the list of all officers responsible for issuing illegal orders. The Rajasthan government has neither taken any against the unit nor provided the names to the ministry till yet.
Later on September 25, the Ministry sent another letter to the Chief Secretary of Rajasthan by asking why the Department of Mines of State of Rajasthan is not following the order of the Supreme Court on one pretext or the other. The officers of Forests and Mining Department in state have refused to say anything in this matter by claiming that this was sub judice.
This is being said in reports that the Government is facing difficulties to explain why 52 mines are continued working in the Aravali Hills despite receiving notices by the Forest Department, Rajasthan Pollution Control Board, Ministry and Supreme Court’s order. Later, Rajasthan Chief Secretary D C Samant told IE that all the orders of the SC will be complied with in the state as soon as possible.