With reports of rampant illegal mining of sand across the state, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Thursday ordered a vigilance inquiry into the alleged nexus between top officials and the illegal mining mafia.
The Chief Minister directed that the Sub-Divisional Magistrate (SDM), Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) and the Station House Officer (SHO) of Dera Bassi, around 20 km from Chandigarh, be shifted out from their postings pending the investigation.
"Further tightening the noose around illegal miners, the Chief Minister directed the Deputy Commissioners (DCs) and SSPs of the state's mining districts to expand the ambit of their investigations to cover the owners and actual bidders of the mines, as well as the owners of the equipment used, in cases of illegal mining," the spokesperson said.
The directive came during a meeting convened on Thursday by the Chief Minister, of the DCs and Senior Superintendents of Police (SSPs) of the 14 districts where mining takes place in the state.
Instructing the officials not to brook any political interference in these investigations, Amarinder said they should catch the owners and the bidders and not confine the action in illegal mining cases to merely the small fry, such as contractors and drivers.
Asserting this government's commitment to wipe out the mining mafia, Amarinder said lawlessness would not be tolerated and the illegal miners would be dealt with strongly.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)