Chennai: Pointing out that there is no constitutional, statutory or legal right under the Rules to claim allocation of funds on Constituency basis, the Madras high court has dismissed the PILs filed by two DMK MLAs, which sought a direction to the Cuddalore District Mineral Foundation Trust and Managing Committee, CDMF, to allocate adequate funds to the areas of Neyveli Assembly Constituency and Thittakudi Assembly constituency on equal basis on par with other constituencies in Cuddalore district from and out of District Mineral Foundation Trust Fund without any discrimination among the assembly constituencies in the district.
A division bench comprising Justices S. Manikumar and Subramoium Prasad dismissed the PILs filed by DMK MLAs Saba Rajendran and V. Ganesan.
Petitioner’s counsel R. Neelakandan submitted that as per the Rules, it was mandate on the part of the authorities to collect fund and use the same for the welfare of mining affected people and area in the district concerned. But, the fund, as far as the Cuddalore district was concerned, was not being used for the affected areas in the entire district, but it was allocated as per the choice of the ruling party representatives particularly to the constituencies for which ruling party MLAs represents. No amount from the said fund was allocated to their constituencies viz., Neyveli and Thittakudi, in which mining affected people were huge in numbers, only for the reason that they belonging to opposition party. There was a total discrimination in allocation of funds from the District Mineral Foundation Trust that too, when the NLC India Limited, a major coal mining operator, was situated in their district. They learnt that funds of about 89 crore have been contributed by the NLC to the Cuddalore District Mineral
Foundation Trust, Neelakandan added.
The bench said as per the District Mineral Foundation Rules, 2017, it was stated that fund must be given to the districts depending upon the welfare, the mining affected areas within the district, as well as the activities to be undertaken....