K'taka Govt to get tough on illegal mining

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Bangalore, Aug 11 (UNI) Karnataka Government today decided to seize iron ore from all illegal mines, following the High Court direction to check illegal mining throughout the state.

Talking to newspersons after addressing a meeting of top officials of the Mines and Forests Departments here, Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa said a satellite survey would be made by remote sensing centre to identify the areas where illegal mining was in progress. Besides, mobile squads and checkposts would be strengthened for the purpose, he added.

He alleged that the Congress Government headed by S M Krishna in 2003, had got sanctioned permission to 24 people to engage in mining in 5,347 hectares of which 5,093 hectares fell under forest area.

He urged the Centre not to grant any fresh permission for mining operations in the state.

Karnataka exports Rs 8,000 crore worth iron ore to various countries every year. However, the state government gets only Rs 80 crore towards royalty.

UNI SR RS SJ RL BST1611

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