Order of the National Green Tribunal regarding illegal river sand mining, Goa, 01/04/2024

  • 01/04/2024

Order of the National Green Tribunal in the matter of News Item titled "sand mafia is taking complete control of illegal river sand mining" appearing in O Heraldo dated 13.02.2024.

The application was registered suo-motu on the basis of a news item. The news item related to the alleged illegal sand mining across many areas in Goa along the riverbed. The news item revealed that rampant illegal sand mining is taking place in various parts of Goa along the riverbed which is seriously affecting Goa’s marine ecosystem.

As per the report the sand mining is taking place in the river through the boats and even in the interior forest areas like Mhadei. Further, such illegal sand mining is also in progress in Ponda taluka, Pernem, Chandor and Rachol, near the ferry point. It also states that in last two years not a single bit of revenue has come to the state from even one ton of sand extracted from Goa rivers, whereas sand is being used in official projects like Atal Setu, Zuari Bridge and in the real estate projects and therefore inference has been drawn that in all these projects illegally mined sand is used.

The NGT directed notices to be issued to the Goa State Pollution Control Board; Central Pollution Control Board; Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change, through Regional Officer (SZ), Goa and Collector and District Magistrate, South Goa. The Principal Bench of the NGT directed the matter to be transferred to the Western Zonal Bench, Pune.