Orissa suspends work in 128 mines

Orissa suspends work in 128 mines

The mines were served notices for alleged illegal mining in Orissa.
"All together, the number of mines served show cause notices by Wednesday is 128," Steel and Mines Secretary Ashok Mohadeo Rao Dalwai said.

"They have been asked to stop operation because they do not possess various statutory requirements they are supposed to have," he said. The statutory requirements include mining licence, and environmental clearances from the state pollution control board.

"Of the 128 mines, 50 are iron ore and manganese ore mines. They have to obtain and produce those things (papers related to their clearances). If they get back with all the required papers, we will allow them to restart operations," Dalwai said.

Orissa has approximately 600 mines and over 2,400 people work in them.
Orissa is one of the largest mineral-bearing states in India -- 16.92 percent of the mineral reserves of the country are estimated to be in the state.

The state government started an investigation in July following allegations by politicians that some mines were operating without licences.

Earlier this month, the government ordered suspension of work in 69 mines and suspension of licences of many traders of different ores after they failed to produce documents to show that their mining activities were legal.
Dalwai said the number of traders whose licences have been placed under suspension are 482.