Nagpur: In an unusual development, local villagers of Chakki-Khapa in Nagpur district on Tuesday stopped excavation of murum being done ‘illegally’ by the contractor. The lease period for mining of murum ended on March 27 itself but the activity was going on illegally. The action by the villagers caught District Administration and Mining Department off guard.
Around 11 am on Tuesday, the local people, led by Vivek Sisodiya, reached the excavation spot and stopped six trucks transporting the mined murum. According to Sisodiya, the contractor named MEP was given the contract for excavating murum from a site situated behind Bhonsala Military School. The murum was being used for construction of ring road. The lease period was from the second week of February to March 27, 2017. According to contract, excavation of 600 brass murum in 12.5 acre land was allowed. The use of mined murum was to be used only in construction of ring road.
Sisodiya further said that the royalty of the contractor had ended on March 27. However, the excavation was going on continuously till today (May 2) which is illegal. In this period, mining of murum and transportation in the quantity of 110-120 trucks was going on that too without paying the royalty. This illegal act dented the government coffers with lakhs apart from ‘loot’ of resources (murum), he said.
Further, the contractor MEP was permitted excavation of murum only for the purpose of construction of ring road. However, it was found that 60 percent of murum was being sold to a company named Lanco that too without royalty. On the other hand, Lanco was using the murum in the ongoing construction of a railway flyover in the district, Sisodiya claimed.
Dwelling on other dubious aspect of the murum mining, Sisodiya said the site for excavation was leased by district administration in a well-planned strategy. The hillock behind Bhonsala Military School was being excavated for murum so that the land gets levelled. The levelled land could then be leased to an educational institute as additional space for years.