Pandit declares crackdown on illegal quarries

- CHANDAN KUMAR MANDAL, Kathmandu

Feb 22, 2018-

Population and Environment Minister Lalbabu Pandit has instructed the authorities concerned to stop issuing operating licences for quarries and crusher plants.

In his first decision after assuming the office last Sunday, Pandit has made a point of monitoring and limiting the number of quarries and shutting down illegal establishments. 

“The minister has expressly instructed the authorities concerned not to issue operating licences for new quarries and crusher plants until further decision,” said Pandit’s personal aide, Washim Alam. 

 He added that the minister is concerned about the environmental threats caused by over-mining of natural resources, particularly construction aggregate like sand and gravel from rivers.  

Environmentalists have long been raising their voices against rampant extraction of sand and gravels which are contributing to environmental degradation. The impact of over-mining has already started to show in the Chure region. Environmentalists claim that many quarries are operating illegally and under political patronage. Minister Pandit has decided to come down hard after the operators of such establishments.

Alam said the minister has also called for monitoring of quarries and crusher plants with permits. 

“If a quarry is found violating the law and contributing to severe environmental degradation, it will face appropriate action,” Alam said.

Published: 22-02-2018 07:48

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