Review ban on quarrying in Lethpora: MP Masoodi to administration

PAMPORE: Member Parliament for Anantnag parliamentary Constituency, Justice (retired) Hasnain Masoodi, has appealed Lieutenant governor administration to review the decision of banning of quarrying in Letpora and adjoining areas.
He told Kashmir Reader that district administration Pulwama banned the quarrying in Letpora and adjoining areas without any justification.
“The ban has disempowered the villagers and hit their livelihood,” Masoodi said, adding that JCB and Tipper drivers, who are highly qualified, are in debt.
He added that qualified youth who were unable to get government jobs used to earn their bread and butter through quarrying.
“They had purchased vehicles and other machinery after getting loans from banks, ” he said, adding that these people have taken around rupees 50 crore loan from different banks.
He told Kashmir Reader that the educated youth have been pushed to starvation.
He accused district administration for disempowering the locals through power.
“The matter is subjudice and the case is in high court but DC Pulwama has issued a blanket ban on quarrying on no reasonable ground, ” he said.
He said that the quarrying land falls outside the forest area.
“All quarries are authorized, have permission and paying royalty, ” he said, adding that the road to quarries has been sealed and villagers are not allowed to go to their proprietary land.
The villagers bought in his notice of the MP that the ban has rendered them jobless and their machinery is getting rusted while the bank interest on availed loans in mounting with each passing day.
District Administration Pulwama had ordered a permanent ban on mining of all sorts over Kahcharai land at Lethpora.
Deputy Commissioner Raghav Langer said the mining in the area not only causes loss to mineral deposits but also destroys the natural beauty of the area. He said the step was taken in the wake of numerous complaints by locals that widespread illegal mining was being undertaken by various unscrupulous elements in the area causing nuisance to locals.
Specific task forces has been constituted to stop illegal mining in the area, Langer said.

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