VELLORE: Though officials are aware of the illegal quarrying of the natural resource, they continue to remain mute spectators. Quarry contractors, backed by politicians, have even issued death threats to anyone raising the issue.
Despite this, the villagers claimed they have submitted at least 40 petitions to the District Collector, the Chief Minister’s Cell and other officials, seeking to restrain the smuggling. However, no action has been taken so far.
Moreover, the narrow panchayat road being used as a thoroughfare to reach NH 46 by heavy vehicles transporting minerals from the stone quarries, is also being used by students of the Government Higher Secondary School which is accessible through the road. “It is risky for our students to walk along the road as heavy vehicles ply throughout the day. These vehicles are driven in a rash manner. We have taken up this issue with the senior officials of the Education Department, but no action has been taken to restrict the movement of the heavy vehicles,” said a teacher of the school.
District Collector R Nanthagopal gave an assurance that he would direct authorities to look into the issue.