Chinese company illegally operating crusher plant in Lahan's Khuttikhola

Published On: December 6, 2022 01:15 PM NPT By: Mithilesh Yadav

LAHAN, Dec 6: A stone crusher plant is being operated at Khuttikhola in Lahan Municipality-14 Bastipur. However, the records of this crusher plant operating in the river are not with the Cottage and Small Industries Office in Lahan.

This crusher plant operating in Khuttikhola has not followed the crusher operation standards. It is said that no environmental impact assessment (EIA) has been made by the plant. No riverine material can be extracted from any river without an EIA. However, by installing a crusher in this river, the river material is being mined using equipment.

To get the industry registration permission, the agreement of the Divisional Forest Office for the demarcation of the forest area must be obtained. EIA reports and other standards must be met. To operate the crusher, standards, reports, and legal provisions must be met as well. The China Railway Company, which got the construction contract from the Kamala River Bridge in the west to Kanchanpur in Saptari under the East-West Highway, is not only operating the crusher plant against the law, but is also mining river products which is also against the law.

It has been found that this company has illegally excavated the Khutti River with an excavator in the Jhwai Kholsi Community Forest located in Ward No. 15 of Lahan Municipality and in the Khesraha area of Ward No 24 of the municipality. To the north of the excavation site are the Chure hills. According to the understanding of the city level monitoring team, the regulatory body has become an eyewitness when digging a deep pit with an excavator at the very beginning of this river.

Last year, the municipality signed a contract with the China Railway Company to excavate at a rate of Rs 4 per cubic meter, but the excavation site was not specified. There was no collection/excavation center board anywhere along the river. The municipality had not demarcated the place from which the river product would be drawn. But China Railway Company is exploiting the river in the Chure protected area.

According to Dinesh Kumar Mahato, chairman of the District Coordination Committee, when he participated in the Khuttikhola monitoring conducted three days ago by the municipality-level monitoring team, “it was seen that there seemed to be legal problems in the excavation”.

The China Railway Company is also found to be exploiting the common Kamala River of Dhanusha and Siraha and Gagan River of Siraha. Locals say that unlimited exploitation in the name of development will lead to destruction.

China Company China Railway No. 2 Engineering Group has constructed a 68.11 km four-lane section of the Kamla-Kanchanpur section outside the market area under the East-West Highway and a total of 32.6 km six-lane road sections in Kanchanpur, Jandol, Birendra Bazar, Rupani, Shambhunath, Lahan, Golbazar, Mirchaiya and Bandipur. According to the group, underpasses will be built in Lahan and Rupani and overhead bridges in two places in Lahan. There is an agreement to complete the highway construction by October 2023.

According to Stone, Gravel, Sand Excavation, Sale and Management Standards 2077, a Monitoring Committee consists of Chief District Officer, Superintendent of Police, Superintendent of Armed Police, Head of Division Forest, Technical Engineer, Head of Revenue Office or Fund and Accounts Control Office, District Coordination Officer coordinated by the Head of District Coordination Committee.

This committee works to ensure compliance with the conditions of the environmental study report, to comply with the approved methods, procedures and testing arrangements for mining and collection, to prevent revenue leakage and theft, to comply with contract agreements, and to monitor and control if the operating crusher industry does not meet the prescribed standards.

However, there is no record of the committee taking action by monitoring the river and crusher industries of the district. The committee's silence rather than action reflects the setting. DCC Mahato said, "We are not able to do the work as expected due to lack of staff and technology. Police and administration need major support in this.”

Shatrudhan Chaudhary, the chief administrative officer of Lahan Municipality, said that there is rogue activity in the river. "We have not made an agreement with the Chinese company at present", he said, "The crusher was seen operating in the river. We cannot say anything about this.”




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