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Stone Crushing Units in Manipur's Moidangpok village alleged of operating illegally
The owners are running illegal Stone Crushing Units in and around the Moidangpok village without any valid license for several years, causing pollution which have become intolerable to the villagers, the petitioners stated.

ByIFP Bureau

Updated on 25 Oct 2021, 8:30 pm

Representational Image (PHOTO: Wikimedia Commons)

Representational Image (PHOTO: Wikimedia Commons)

 

A Public Interest Litigation (PIL) was filed before the High Court of Manipur by six representatives of Moidangpok village in Imphal West, seeking an appropriate direction for closure of the Stone Crushing Units, which are running in and around Moidangpok village allegedly without obtaining necessary factory License, and causing pollution and hardships to the villagers.  

The High Court of Manipur on Monday issued a notice to the respondents concerned with the returnable date on November 18. The HC also made it clear that the pendency of the PIL will not prevent the authority concerned from taking action against the alleged wrongdoers.

The representatives, namely Thokchom Amumacha Meitei, Samom Tombi Devi, Ningthoukhongjam Manglem Singh, Thokchom Bijen Singh, Yurembam Premjit Singh, Ahanthem Kantajit Singh of Moidangpok village filed the PIL.

It was filed against commissioner (Textile, Com. and Ind.), 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.

As per the PIL, the petitioners are residents of Moidangpok village and their village is surrounded by vast agricultural land. It stated that various non-agricultural activities such as Stone Crushing Units have been taken up over the said agricultural land. Seven Stone Crushing Units started producing thick fumes of stone dust, causing various health and environmental hazards such as noise pollution, water pollution, and air pollution, it stated. The villagers of Moidangpok are living in critical conditions due to the health and environmental hazards caused by the stone crushing units, it added.

The deterioration in their health and environmental pollution was due to the daily emissions of stone dust into the air, earth/soil, and water from the illegal Stone Crushing Units, the PIL stated.

It mentioned that agricultural activity is the main source of income of the villagers and most of the villagers are poor and they are not in a position to raise their voice against the private respondents, who are financially sound and highly influential people, in their individual capacity. Thus, the Petitioners opted to espouse the problems faced by the villagers of Moidangpok, it stated.

The owners are running illegal Stone Crushing Units in and around the Moidangpok village without any valid license for several years, causing pollution which have become intolerable to the villagers, the petitioners stated.

It also stated that the Stone Crushing Units are run by the owners in the name and style of M/S Shanta Stone Crushing Centre, M/S Nabakumar Enterprises, M/S Debala Salam Industry, M/S Yess Infrastructures Private Limited, M/S Santosh Stone Crusher, M/S Padmabati Enterprises, and M/S Shambhu Enterprises respectively.

It stated that the petitioners have already approached different authorities to redress the problems faced by them due to pollution emanated by the private respondents. However, they could not get a satisfactory response and the illegal Stone Crushing Units are still running without any respite, it stated. The petitioners stated that they would be able to pay the cost if any imposed by the High Court while espousing the cause of poor and downtrodden villagers through the present Public Interest Litigation.

The Stone Crushing Units have been alleged of running on the paddy land in clear violation of the Manipur Conservation of Paddy land and Wetland Act, 2014. However, no tangible action has so far been taken up against the Private Respondents, who run illegal stone crushing units, it stated.

It stated that Moidangpok village is a small village located within Imphal West district, Manipur. Moidangpok Village comprises two villages namely Moidangpok Khullen and Moidangpok Khunou, it mentioned. It stated that the total geographical area of the village is about 714.16 hectares. The total population of the village according to the 2011 census is 4,212 and there are about 964 houses in the village.

The PIL stated that during the last 10 years, several Stone Crushing Units are coming 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 licence under the Factories Act, 1948, which 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, it added. 

 
IFP Bureau

IFP Bureau

IMPHAL, Manipur

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