National Green Tribunal takes suo motu cognisance of illegal mining, illegal gravel storage in Kishanganj range area of Bihar

The National Green Tribunal (NGT) took Suo Motu cognizance of the matter of  illegal mining and illegal gravel storage in Kishanganj range area of Bihar.

The Petition is registered suo-moto on the basis of the news item appearing in the daily newspaper dated 25.01.2024.

The news item discloses that the same action has been taken against the illegal mining in the Kishanganj range and the Forest Department has seized 220 tonnes of gravel. 

Similarly, as per the news item in Kelwara range area, 90 trolleys filled with illegally mined stones have been seized and in Kavai also 1 trolley illegally transporting stones and boulders was seized.   

The news item raises substantial issue relating to compliance of environmental norms.  

“Power of the Tribunal to take up the matter in suo-motu exercise of power has been recognized by the Hon’ble Supreme Court in the matter of “Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai vs. Ankita Sinha & Ors.” reported in 2021 SCC Online SC 897.”

Hence, the Principal Bench of Justice Sudhir Agarwal , Justice Arun Kumar Tyagi and Dr. A Senthil Vel impleaded the following as respondents in the matter:

i. Bihar State Pollution Control Board through its Member Secretary. 

ii. District Magistrate, Kishanganj.   

Since the matter relates to the Eastern Zonal Bench, Kolkata , therefore , the Bench transferred the matter to the  Eastern Zonal Bench for appropriate further action. Office is directed by the NGT to transfer the original record to the  Eastern Zonal Bench  and the matter is listed on 10.05.2024.

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