SC warns of contempt action for non-compliance of order regarding re-grassing of mined areas

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday took note of Jharkhand’s government claim about non-compliance of its earlier direction regarding re-grassing of mined areas by lease holders after ceasing operations and warned that it might take contempt action against the concerned authority.
A bench headed by Chief Justice S A Bobde told the Centre that no ground breaking after e-auction of coal blocks for commercial mining be done in Jharkhand without the apex court’s nod.
The apex court also said it might take action against concerned officials if the directions given by the top court was not complied with.
Don’t break ground for mining in Jharkhand without our nod, the bench, also comprising Justices A S Bopanna and V Ramasubramanian, said.
The apex court, while noting that mining results in complete elimination of grass, had on January 8 directed the government to impose the condition on lease holders that they will have to restore the mined area by re-grassing it after ceasing operations.
The top court, which had passed the order on a separate petition against large-scale illegal mining across the country, had asked the Centre to devise appropriate methods to ensure compliance of this condition.
During the hearing conducted through video-conferencing on Monday, the bench was apprised by advocate Tapesh Kumar Singh, appearing for Jharkhand government, that direction given by the top court regarding re-grassing was not being complied with.
Attorney General, if our order is not complied with then we may take contempt action against the concerned. We want strict compliance of our order. Re-grassing needs to be done for grazing animals. Animals cannot graze due to mining, the bench said.
The apex court asked Singh to give the details in this regard to Attorney General K K Venugopal so that he would look into it.

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