CBI grills IAS official over Bellary mining

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Hyderabad, Feb 26: Following the instruction of the Supreme Court (SC), CBI started its probing into the alleged illegal mining activities of Obulapuram Mining Company (OMC) in the Bellary Reserve Forest area. The CBI had grilled an IAS officer in connection with illicit mining activities.

A CBI team on Friday, Feb 25 questioned Y Srilakshmi, Commissioner (Health), as the agency found irregularities in certain leases given to OMC (owned by Karnataka Tourism Minister Gali Janardhan Reddy).

The probe agency had detected loopholes between 2005 and 2009, when she was the secretary of Andhra Pradesh's industries department, CBI sources said on Saturday, Feb 26.

OMC is accused of changing mining lease boundary markings between Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka. It also been charged for indulging in illegal mining in the Bellary Reserve Forest area, spread between Bellary district of Karnataka and Anantpur district of Andhra Pradesh.

"A CBI team questioned the IAS officer as to whether (standard) procedures were followed or not while according mining leases to the OMC," a senior CBI officer said, declining to give further details.

The CBI team started the probe into the alleged illegal mining activities last month, and has visited the mining areas leased to OMC.


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