CM Orders Vigilance Probe into Chakkittapara Mining Row - The New Indian Express

CM Orders Vigilance Probe into Chakkittapara Mining Row

Published: 08th December 2013 07:32 AM

Last Updated: 08th December 2013 08:38 AM

Amid mounting pressure from various quarters, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy has ordered a vigilance probe into allegations of irregularities in the sanction accorded for iron ore mining at Chakkittapara in the Koyilandi taluk and in Mavoor and Kakkoor.

A special team will be constituted for the purpose. The Industries Department had recommended a vigilance inquiry.

Chandy took the decision on Friday after consultations with Industries Minister P K Kunjalikutty and Home Minister Tiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan.

However,the order was kept under wraps.  Apparently, pressure mounted on Chandy after KPCC president Ramesh Chennithala demanded an announcement on the probe, which the Chief Minister made in the afternoon on Saturday.

Chandy had to yield even though he was in the midst of his Mass Contact Programme at Alappuzha.

The file carrying the Industries Department’s recommendation came to the Chief Minister’s office on Thursday, while he was away at Wayanad. On the basis of a letter received by the state government on January 1,2009 from MSPL to undertake mining operations in Chakkittapara, the Centre on April 23,2010 granted permissive sanction to start mining in an area of 406.45 hectares.

Sanction was also accorded for iron ore mining in a 53.93-hectare area in Mavoor and 281.22-hectare area in Kakoor.

For the final mining lease sanction of the Ministry of Environment and Forests, clearance based on the Forest Conservation Act and Environment Protection Act as well as  a mining plan from the Indian Bureau of Mining were mandatory.

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