Petition on quarry lease For barytes mining: Andhra Pradesh HC rejects plea

Sushree Mohanty

The Andhra Pradesh High Court, in its hearing of the writ petition filed by JC Vijaya, wife of former minister and TDP leader JC Diwakar Reddy has dismissed the said petition for quarry lease of Barytes Mines in the district of Anantapur.

Challenging the previously instituted proceedings by Director of Mines, JC Vijay had moved to High Court questioning the rejection of her applications for the quarry lease of barite mines in the village of Yellutla at Puttulu Mandal in Anantapur district by the former.

The High Court, while hearing the appeal, rejected the contentions that the Government cannot dismiss the application for the reason of securing forest lands and stated that both the Central as well as the State Government had given Stage 1 and Stage 2 licenses to extend the forestland for mining. 

The Court, in its pronouncement, has clarified that the State Government is conferred with the power to issue mining and lease permits.

Further explaining its reasons for dismissal of the plea, the court stated that it was due to the availability of barytes in the non-forest area, the Director of Mines and Geology repudiated the licenses.

In the Year 2017, JC Vijaya had applied for barite excavations in the forestland however her applications were rejected by the Director of Mines on December 03, 2019.

Following this, she filed a writ appeal in the High Court testing the dismissal of her application.

JC Vijay presented the contention that she has already spent a fortune amounting to Rs. 50 Lakhs on afforestation and has also incurred losses post the revocation of permits. ASG Shriram has also submitted arguments.

The Court rejected the petition on the ground that a lease cannot be granted based on the fact that the party has suffered damages and loss.

Earlier on December 01, 2020, the Andhra Pradesh State Mining Authorities  levied a hefty fine of Rs 100 Crores against Trishul Cement Company India Ltd, owned by the former MP TDP leader JC Diwakar Reddy.

According to reports, the fine was imposed on the organization for illegal mining of in excess of 14 lakh metric tonnes of limestone from 1,600 sections of land at Konuppalapadu of Yadiki Mandal without obtaining the due permissions or paying royalty fees earning them a warning from the authorities for payment of the fine at the earliest or they would confiscate assets as per the R&R Act. 

Aside from this, the State mining authorities had also discovered abnormalities in two organizations named the Sumana and Bhramaramba mining organizations which are co-owned by the JC family and show cause notices were served on the family members of JC Diwakar Reddy for illegally operating two dolomite-mining quarries in Anantapur district.

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