M. K. Stalin
Chennai: DMK working president M. K. Stalin has demanded CBI inquiry into the alleged irregularities in beach sand mining in the state and sought the state government to immediately recover the royalty losses from lease holders.
"If it fails to recover the royalty losses, then the Centre should intervene and order a CBI probe into the irregularities," he said on Tuesday. In a statement here Mr Stalin claimed that the ruling AIADMK government had always brushed aside whenever people raised the issue of irregularities in illicit beach sand mining for rare minerals which led to over Rs. 1 lakh crore, losses. It was only after the Thoothukudi district collector wrote to the state government on August 6, 2013, that an investigation under a bureaucrat was ordered.
Though attempts were made by V. V. Minerals and the AIADMK government to stall the investigations, the Madras high court intervened and prevented it, Mr. Stalin alleged and added though a detailed report was submitted to the government on September 17, 2013, the government kept it under wraps. "Although the DMK attempted to raise this issue several times in the Assembly and in public meetings, as well, the government continued to maintain secrecy over the report for four years," Mr Stalin charged.
Quoting from the 1,170-page report that was based on inspections carried out by the special team in Tirunelveli, Thoothukudi and Kanyakumari districts, the DMK leader claimed that over one crore tonne of beach sand was illicitly mined from 52 lease sites and exported. "The exports were valued at around Rs. 1,80,000 crore. This indicates the astronomical losses to the state exchequer," he said.