‘All Mandya JD(S) MLAs are involved in mining; what is wrong in it?’
Srirangapatna: Amidst raging controversy over the safety of Krishna Raja Sagar Dam in Mandya and following Mandya MP Sumalatha’s revelations that cracks have developed in the Dam due to mining activity, Srirangapatna MLA Ravindra Srikantaiah visited the Dam this morning to take stock of the situation.
The Dam comes under the MLA’s Constituency and his visit assumes significance. He was accompanied by Cauvery Neeravari Nigam Limited (CNNL) Superintending Engineer Vijaykumar, Executive Engineer Vanaraju, AEE Farooq, Tahsildar M.V. Roopa and the officers, who gave a detailed explanation on the Dam’s safety to the MLA.
Ravindra Srikantaiah also inspected the works to replace the worn out sluice gates of the Dam. The MLA went around the South entrance of the Dam and visited gates 106, 103 and 114 where the safety aspect was also ascertained.
The officers told him that the Dam was safe and there were no cracks as the structure is annually maintained and all visible cracks are sealed with concrete and mortar. Later speaking to news persons, Ravindra Srikantaiah said that the Mandya MP has been raising the issue of non-existent cracks, despite assurances and statements by the Dam managers.
“What proof does the MP have? Through repeatedly raising this issue, she is feeding information to anti-national elements. This is a national property and before becoming the MP she has taken oath that she will protect national wealth and properties,” the JD(S) MLA charged.
Questioning Sumalatha’s credibility, he asked, “Who gave you the powers? Are you the CM or the PM? I have not seen a person as notorious as you.” Alleging that the MP and her henchmen had badly treated Mandya Deputy Commissioner S. Aswathi during the former’s visit to certain stone crushing units in Mandya yesterday, the MLA said that the MP and her followers showed disrespect to the DC.
“It was under Sumalatha’s husband M.H. Ambarish’s watch illegal mining has thrived at Hangarahalli since 2007. And it was Ambarish’s supporters who had indulged in illegal mining then. We have records for that,” he claimed.
Replying to a question, the MLA said that all the followers of all JD(S) MLAs in Mandya had a stake in mining. “Mining is not a crime. All the MLAs including me have links to the mining industries and are actively involved. There is nothing wrong with it. Even the CM has announced in the Assembly that all illegal mining will be regularised,” Srikantaiah added.