Mangalore, Aug 17, 2014: “vested interests” have taken over sand mining business in Dakshina Kannada, District-in-Charge Minister B Ramanath Rai, directed the district mines and geology department to renew the licenses of sand miners at the earliest. The department should make way for interested sand miners to take up the mining, rather than reserving the rights with only a few.
Chairing a district level review meeting at the deputy commissioner’s office on August 16, and briefing about sand mining activities, Deputy Commissioner A B Ibrahim said that there were 63 license holders for sand mining in CRZ area. Of them, the licenses of 59 individuals have expired and only four persons are carrying out sand mining activity at present. Their licenses too will expire by this month end, he said.
Explaining the reason for the delay in renewing the license, Mines and Geology department In-charge Deputy Director Nagendrappa said the department with the help of NIT-K had identified 19 sand blocks in CRZ area. After receiving the approval from the district-level committee, the report was submitted to the Ministry of Environment and Forest for its approval and the department is yet to receive the green signal, he said. He added that the department has so far received 168 applications from people seeking license for sand mining in CRZ area. Minister Rai directed the department to grant licenses to sand miners without waiting for the nod from MoEF, as the delay would create scarcity of sand.
Rain havoc funds : Minister K Abhayachandra Jain and Rai rued over the district receiving meager funds from the government for addressing rain damage issue, when compared to neighbouring Kodagu and Chikmagalur districts. The district-in-charge minister directed the DC to prepare an elaborate proposal seeking the rain damage fund.
The DC said that the district administration has submitted a proposal to the government seeking Rs five crore to carry out rain damage restoration works.
“Compensation has been distributed to the families of 15 people who lost their lives due to thunder this year. As many as 849 cases were reported of house damage and a compensation of Rs 50 lakh has been distributed,” he said.
DC complex : Speaking about the proposed construction of DC complex at Padil, DC A B Ibrahim said that 5.89 acre forest land was identified at Alape-Padil for the purpose. According the project plan, the complex will be a three storeyed building with a ground floor. It will spread over 1.50 lakh sq ft area and the project cost is estimated at Rs 25 crore. It has been planned to shift 16 government departments to the new complex, once it is constructed. Many people say that the historic location of the present DK DC complex is a good spot and shiftings have only ulterior motive.