SC refuses to modify order for deposit of ore sale proceeds for SPV

 The Supreme Court, on Tuesday, declined to modify its direction for deposit of 10% of iron ore sale proceeds by every lease holder for the special purpose vehicle (SPV) for extracting minerals in Ballari, Chitradurga and Tumakuru districts.

A three-judge bench presided over by Justice Ranjan Gogoi said every mining activity results in baneful effects which need to be corrected and destruction of environment that inevitably occurs in the process needs to be mitigated.

“Even the new lessees who may not have been involved in such degradation are contributing to the process of reclamation and restoration,” the bench, also comprising Justices Prafulla C Pant and A M Khanwilkar, said.

The state government constituted the SPV, known as Karnataka Mining Environment Restoration Corporation, on June 13, 2014, following a direction by the apex court in a PIL filed by an NGO.

Federation of Indian Mining Industry, Southern Region, supported by another lessee M/s Vedanta, had sought modification of the apex court’s order.

The apex court, meanwhile, directed the state government and the Centrally Empowered Committee to submit a detailed proposal with regard to implementation of the scheme of construction of conveyor belt system in respect of existing leases and the details of the project relating to the construction of railway sidings and railway sub-lines.

The court granted approval to integrated mining and part of the railway infrastructure that was proposed, namely construction of the conveyor belt system, railway sidings and railway sub-lines as part of the ‘Comprehensive Environmental Plan for Mining Impact Zone’ for reclamation and rehabilitation of the area devastated by illegal mining.

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