The PIL submitted by an ocean scientist claims that more than private companies like VV Minerals India, the government has violated the Atomic Energy Act. The Madras HC has thus given those erring government bodies 4 weeks to file counter affidavits.
The Madras HC received a written affidavit regarding alleged illegal beach sand mining by government organisations and companies like VV Mineral India on the coasts of Tamil Nadu from Ocean scientist G Victor Rajamanickam.
G Victor Rajamanickam sought a ‘Special Investigation Team’ (SIT) to probe illegal beach sand mining in the coastal districts of Tamil Nadu.
On receipt of this PIL, the HC has asked the Ministry of Mines, Department of Atomic Energy (DAE), Environment Ministry in addition to private mining companies to file counter-affidavits, in not later than 4 weeks of this demand.
The Madras HC has also warned that it would impose fees in case of delay in filing the necessary affidavits.
The PIL submitted by the ocean scientist claims that over and above the private companies, the government has allegedly violated the Atomic Energy Act.
He claims that they managed to do this by including monazite and other banned minerals in 16 mining leases given to private mining companies in Tirunelveli district.
The announcement of this information adds a new perspective to the illegal beach sand mining scam that is pegged to be to the tune of Rs. 1 lakh crore Indian Rupees in the export of rare earth minerals.
“The fact that the state government on its own granted permission to mine monazite, zircon, leucoxene and sillimanite by modifying 16 existing mining leases without reference to the Centre and the DAE, establishes the complexity of the matter at hand,” says VV Mineral Vaikundarajan.