Northeast

'Illegal stone-crushing units operating merrily in Manipur'

Six representatives of Moidangpok village in Imphal West filed a PIL before the Manipur High Court seeking appropriate direction for closure of the stone crushing units running without obtaining necessary factory license.

ByIFP Bureau

Updated 12 May 2022, 4:51 am

(PHOTO: IFP)
(PHOTO: IFP)

 

Despite a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed before the Manipur High Court by six representatives of Moidangpok village in Imphal West seeking appropriate direction for closure of the stone crushing units which are running in and around village allegedly without obtaining necessary factory license, thus causing pollution and hardships to the villagers, the HC found that the affidavit filed by the forest department has admitted that illegal stone crushing units are operating merrily in the state.

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The division bench comprising chief justice Sanjay Kumar and justice Lanusungkum Jamir on April 5 had found from the affidavit filed by the Forest Department that illegal stone-crushing units are operating merrily in the state. However, the Forest Department stated that it has no power to close down such units and it is only exercising the power of seizure of unauthorised forest produce, the stones.

Counsel of additional advocate general of Manipur sought time to file an affidavit, explaining in clear terms, as to what the state authorities propose to do in the matter given the admitted fact that illegal activities are going on but is yet to submit.

However, on May 11 hearing before the HC, it appeared that an affidavit filed by deputy commissioner, Imphal West disclosed that the state authorities are yet to take stringent action against the illegal stone crushing units which are admittedly operating in the state.

Government advocate stated that he is now appearing in the matter and sought an adjournment on the ground that the file is yet to be received.

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It may also be mentioned that in regards to the PIL hearing, the affidavit filed by the chief inspector of factories, government of Manipur leaves a lot to be desired. Having admitted that illegal stone-crushing units are being run, he surprisingly states that he is unable to do anything. It is not open to a government functionary of his stature to plead helplessness after admitting that unlicensed factories are being run within his jurisdiction.

Mentioned may be made that the PIL was filed by six representatives of Moidangpokpi village, Imphal West against Commissioner (Textile, Commerce and Industries), government of Manipur; Chief Inspector of Factories and Boilers cum Director, Trade, Commerce and Industries, Department of Trade, Commerce and Industries, government of Manipur; principal chief conservator of Forest, Forest department, Government of Manipur; deputy commissioner, Imphal West district, Manipur Pollution Control Board through its member secretary, including six owners of stone crushing unit as private respondents.

The PIL stated that during the last 10 years, several Stone Crushing Units came up in and around the village by converting the nearby agricultural lands into stone crushing factory sites illegally. Presently, there are seven stone crushing units operating in and around the Moidangpok village illegally without obtaining a licence under the Factories Act, 1948. The PIL further stated that these stone crushing units have brought a host of noise and dust pollution problems in the vicinity by way of fugitive emissions which adversely affect the ambient air quality and human health.

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First published:12 May 2022, 4:51 am

Tags:

air pollutionstone crushing unitsillegal stone crushing units in ManipurMoidangpok village

IFP Bureau

IFP Bureau

IMPHAL, Manipur

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