Mandleshwar: Maheshwar MLA and state former culture minister Dr Vijayalakshmi Sadho has made a scathing attack on the MP government over the rampant illegal sand mining in her constituency.
She alleged that for the last two years sand mining has become a curse for the ecology in the Narmada belt.
According to the statement issued by senior Congress leader Dr Sadho, sand mining is being done by armed goons armed with illegal weapons by one RK Gupta.
She said that Gupta, who is an authorised contractor of the government, is conducting sand mining in the areas beyond the leased ones.
Due to the goons of the said contractor there is an atmosphere of fear among the people of the area. The district administration is hands in glove with the contractor, so it is turning a blind eye to his crime. In the past also, in the Kasrawad area, the goons of the contractor had opened fire in Akbarpura village, but no legal action was taken.
Matter taken up in Assembly
Dr Sadho said that during the various sessions of the question hour in the Assembly, questions have been raised regarding the rampant illegal mining in Maheshwar Assembly constituency, but it is beyond her comprehension as to why no action has been taken on the issue.
Threat to ancient ghats, dam
Expressing apprehension, she said, Sand mining in the catchment area of Maheshwar Hydroelectric Project may harm the Maheshwar Dam. The damage to the ancient ghats of Maheshwar and Mandleshwar due to this illegal excavation is also a matter of concern.
District Mineral Officer Sawan Kumar Chouhan when contacted said, ìMining is being done by the contractor only in the approved areas. Last year, on a complaint pertaining to stock of illegal sand, a report shared with the government. Action is expected. Before the imposition of the riverbed norms, physical verification of stock and mine area will be done and only after that they will release the royalty of the stock.
When contacted RK Gupta Constructionís in-charge Ravindra Shekhawat rubbished all the allegations levelled by Dr Sadho. Shekhawat said that the allegations made by the MLA are completely baseless. Despite the complaint regarding royalty of stock, we have been allowed to restock by the department. Sand is being mined only from the area of approved mines, he said.