Bhubaneswar;4/9/17:Odisha government today initiated the process for the recovery of Rs 17,576 crore penalties from 152 mining companies for illegal extraction of mineral resources.
Earlier the Supreme Court had ordered that the entire price of illegally mined ore from the mineral-rich districts of Odisha be recovered from the leaseholders.
The state government, which has come under clouds of suspicion for allegedly patronising the mining mafias in plundering the precious mineral resources, was spurred to action in the wake of Supreme Court order on August 2 directing the government to revamp the ‘outdated’ mining policy by framing a new one by December 31 to protect the precious natural resources for posterity.
The government agencies today served notices to the accused miners to pay up the penalties or face legal prosecution, according to official sources.
The apex court had ruled that the mining companies that had been operating without necessary clearances in Odisha would be subject to a 100% penalty on the price of the ore that had been illegally extracted.
The lessees in the districts of Keonjhar, Sundergarh and Mayurbhanj in Odisha have rapaciously mined iron ore and manganese ore, apparently destroyed the environment and forests and perhaps caused untold misery to the tribals in the area, the apex court division bench headed by Justice Madan B had observed.