Mandya: Mandya District in-Charge Minister K.C. Narayanagowda said that the Government has decided to ban all types of mining and quarrying, both legal and illegal, in 10-12 km radius of KRS Reservoir taking into account the safety and stability of the Dam.
Speaking to press persons after holding a meeting at the DC’s office here yesterday, Narayanagowda said that henceforth there will be no legal or illegal quarrying in the vicinity of the Dam.
Pointing out that the decision to ban quarrying has been taken after consulting all the concerned authorities, the Minister said that all types of quarrying in Bebi Betta of Pandavapura taluk too will be banned and the Chief Minister will be approached for issuing an order in this regard.
Maintaining that the KRS Dam is safe and any confusions that Mandya MP Sumalatha Ambarish may have in this regard will be cleared along with document proof.
Dispelling the fears of farmers and all others who have expressed doubts about the safety of the Dam, he said that mining will be banned taking into account the Dam’s safety in future.
Asserting that curbing of illegal mining is among the top priorities of the Government, he said that the mining check-posts have been increased from 5 to 8 as a first step in this regard. The other measures included GPS installation, CCTV Cameras installation and use of drones etc., he added.
Noting that there are many legal quarrying units around KRS Dam and Bebi Betta, he said that after the enforcement of ban, these units will be allotted alternative places for continuing their activities. Clarifying that there will be no fresh license fee for mining at allotted alternative places, Narayanagowda defended the Government’s decision saying that such a ban has been imposed around Gujarat’s Narmada Dam too.
The Minister further said that Melukote MLA C.S. Puttaraju too has welcomed the ban decision and so also most of the political leaders of the region, for which he is thankful to them.
The Government will take measures to get a stay order if quarry owners succeed in getting permission from the Court to continue mining in the vicinity of KRS Dam, he said.