The High Court on Wednesday reserved its orders on petitions filed by Rakshana Steels Limited challenging the state government’s decision to terminate the memorandum of understanding signed by the AP Mineral Development Corporation and Rakshana Steels for mineral extraction.
Justice L Narasimha Reddy was dealing with a batch of petitions which included pleas opposing government’s earlier decision to allow Rakshana Steels to mine iron ore in the Bayyaram area of Khammam district.
Rakshana Steels, allegedly promoted by YSR’s son-in-law Anil Kumar, signed the agreement with APMDC for exploration and mining of iron ore in 56,690 hectares in Bayyaram, Garla and Nealakondapalli mandals in Khammam district for a steel plant to be set up by Rakshana Steels and its consortium. The Centre cancelled the allotment of land to APMDC in August 2010 keeping in view the complaints from local tribal organisations and environmentalists that one third of the land allotted for mining covered tribal habitations, roads and railway lines.
Advocate-general A Sudarshan Reddy told the judge that no mining lease was granted to the APMDC at any point of time. As the agreement was terminated the petitioners were entitled to damages for the losses incurred by them.
Bojja Tarakam, appearing for tribal organisations, urged the court not to permit iron ore exploration in the area even if the Centre permitted it.