Mining mineral with machines banned: Biren
Imphal: Manipur Cabinet had resolved to ban mining of minerals including sand in riverbeds with the help of machines in Manipur, chief minister N. Biren Singh said on Tuesday, the Seventh Day of the 3rd Session of the 12th Manipur Legislative Assembly.
However, Biren said, manual mining will be streamlined considering the livelihood of the manual labourers. The manual workers can continue their work with prior permissions from Commerce and Industries and Forest departments.
The chief minister was replying to the Calling Attention put up by MLA Surjakumar Okram on the illegal mining leading to deterioration of Thoubal river.
Leader of the House, Biren said, “We, the human beings, are selfish and some of the people have no civic sense.” He said that 99 per cent of the people are not aware of setting up toilets properly. They built toilets near the running river irrespective of whether they are contaminating the water which are consumed by others. He informed the House that recently the government has done a mass drive of eviction of toilets and cleaning the river banks stretching from Kangpokpi to Imphal river. He said Singda Dam is drying up because of the cutting down of trees on the hills around Singda, leading to scarcity of drinking water.
Biren informed the House that the government has taken up steps from time to time by arresting the persons involved in illegal mining and quarrying especially at Thoubal river. For the survival strategy, the people are illegally mining sand and others, neglecting the consequences that affects the future generation. He said that any activities that are disastrous to the environment will be seriously dealt with as per the law. He informed the House that locations are being identified by Industry department and Forest department. Proposals are sent to the Centre for consent to preserve the areas, he added.
Replying to the queries of MLA Surjakumar, minister of Relief and Disaster Management, Awangbow Newmai said the government declared Drought during kharif-2019 on August 31, 2019. Based on the field survey on various parameters, the State Government sought Rs 151.04 crore as relief assistance from National Disaster Response Fund. The ministry sanctioned Rs 26.53 crore in 2020 as assistance, he added.
Minister of Textiles, Commerce and Industries, Nemcha Kipgen informed the August House that no stone crusher is permitted/licensed to function in paddy land. She added that the permit/license for stone crushers is issued under ‘The Manipur Factories Rules, 2021’.
Forest, Environment and Climate Change minister Th. Biswajit Singh informed the House that there is no forest village in the Nongmaiching Reserved Forest and that there is no Reserved Forest by the name of Leimaching Reserve Forest. He added that construction of religious and memorial structures in Reserved Forest area are not allowed without the prior forest clearance from the Central Government under the Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980 after promulgation of the Act from 25th October, 1980. He said the structures that are related to religion cannot be evicted considering the social sentiments of the people.
Replying to a query raised by MLA K. Ranjit Singh, Power minister Biswajit Singh informed the House that during peak hour 250 MW of power are needed in the state. The pre-construction work of Loktak Downstream amounting to Rs 63.5389 crore have been completed, but the work of Project Construction is yet to start.