SC slams Kar­nataka on mine sur­vey

Down to Earth - - THE FORTNIGHT -

THE SUPREME Court has crit­i­cised the Kar­nataka gov­ern­ment for con­duct­ing a fresh sur­vey to de­ter­mine min­ing lease bound­aries for a part of Es­sar Steel's Bal­lari iron ore mine. Es­sar had sought the sur­vey to get the mine's sta­tus changed from for­est to rev­enue land to en­able min­ing. The gov­ern­ment was con­duct­ing the sur­vey, de­spite the court-ap­pointed Cen­trally Em­pow­ered Com­mit­tee (CEC) hav­ing al­ready iden­ti­fied the area as for­est land. The court con­sid­ered CEC's re­port along with the sur­vey re­port by the gov­ern­ment. Fi­nally, it de­cided to stand by the CEC's find­ings. A bench of Jus­tices Ran­jan Go­goi, Pra­fulla C Pant and A M Khan­wilkar said, Not only the lessee's con­duct, the le­gal­ity of the joint sur­vey un­der­taken by the Kar­nataka of­fi­cials does not in­spire our con­fi­dence.

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