Order of the National Green Tribunal regarding illegal mining near habitation, village Bankuaiya, district Rewa, Madhya Pradesh, 11/08/2021

  • 11/08/2021

Order of the National Green Tribunal in the matter of Voice of Democracy Vs State of Madhya Pradesh dated 11/08/2021.

The matter related to illegal operation of stone crusher and illegal stone mining, near a school, a primary health centre, an anganwadi and habitation in village Bankuaiya, tehsil Huzoor, district Rewa, Madhya Pradesh, resulting in pollution affecting public health.

Report filed by the Madhya Pradesh Pollution Control Board and the District Magistrate, Rewa, June 24, 2021 stated that there is mining lease in favour of JP Cement since 1990. There are 14 stone crushers and 6 small leases. Out of 14 stone crushers, 7 were operational. Two stone crushers were within 100 meters from habitation but were found closed. 7 stone crushers were found to be compliant, but only 3 had consent. Two of the stone crushers were directed to be shifted. And no pollution was found.

The bench comprising NGT Chairperson Adarsh Kumar Goel, Justices Sudhir Agarwal and Brijesh Sethi, August 11, 2021 called the report incomplete. When 7 stone crushers were said to be compliant, how consent is said to be only with three. Further, the court noted that it was difficult to accept the fact that the stone crushers were compliant in terms of air quality norms and had valid source of water - when there is absence of periphery wall and green belt to mitigate dust and noise and no valid source for water sprinkling.

The court expressed its disappointment with the persons behind the report directed that a fresh report be prepared by a new joint committee and said that "no member of the Committee who was earlier party to the report will now be included in the new Committee". Further, no stone crushers which are closed would not be allowed to open without remedial measures, including accountability for the past violations and compliance of environmental norms, the order said.