CRZ Sand: High Court upholds decision on task force

Team Udayavani, Mar 27, 2019, 8:19 AM IST

Mangaluru: The High Court has upheld the decision undertaken by the ‘District Sand Action Committee’ under the leadership of DK Deputy Commissioner to provide permits to remove sand from the sand blocks in the district’s Coastal Regulatory Zone (CRZ), setting 2011-12 financial year as the benchmark.

Based on the 2011-12 benchmark, the District Sand Action Committee gave the permits to remove sand from CRZ areas on Sep 20 2018. Questioning this decision by the committee, Abdul Majeed and Abdul Gafoor of Mangaluru taluk filed a writ with the High Court.

As per the 2011-12 benchmark being followed by the District Sand Action Committee, permission was provided to only 53 persons to carry out traditional sand mining in CRZ areas. But this number increased to 583 persons in the next 5 years. Therefore in order to protect the rights of the traditional sand miners the committee took the decision to follow the 2011-12 benchmark in 2018. But the applicants filled a writ against this decision in the High Court.

The advocates who argued on behalf of the applicants stated that they had got the permission to indulge in sand mining from 2012 to 2017. But in 2018, since the committee used the 2011-12 benchmark to provide the permits for sand mining, the applicants were devoid of their permits and hence lost their right for a livelihood. Therefore they requested the Court to cancel the decision taken by the committee in 2018.

The lawyers arguing on behalf of the committee stated that with the aim to make sure the continuous flow of the river water and by considering traditional sand miners, this decision was taken in 2018. In 2011-12, permits for traditional sand mining was given to 53 traditional sand mining families. But in 2014, the number of applicants increased to 240. Taking this rise into account, the 2011-12 financial year was taken into consideration. The decision was taken considering the welfare of the local traditional sand miners, they argued.

Considering the response given by the District Sand Action Committee, the Court removed the application by the applicants.

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