Dhenkanal: After local mineral mafias who are active under Odapada block in Dhenkanal were known to have formed a WhatsApp group along with some unscrupulous staffers of this tehsil, the district administration accelerated raids on illegal minor mineral quarries.
According to sources, mafias get information about raids to be conducted well ahead of time through a WhatsApp group, causing headache for Dhenkanal district administration.
Under changed circumstances, the administration has decided to conduct surprise raids on illegal sand as well as black stone quarries, without any prior planning. In this connection, a raid was carried out on a stone quarry at Bautiragada under Odapada tehsil limits Friday.
According to reports, officials had used a private vehicle for the purpose in order to escape the eyes of minor mineral mafias. Four tippers which were engaged in transporting black stone (bearing registration Nos.-OR09 K2463, OR19 K1357, OR19 L1357 and OR06 J6817), including an excavator vehicle were seized.
Additional tehsildars Sagarika Sahoo and Anupama Murmu, revenue Inspectors Chinmaya Das, Soumyaranjan Parida, Utsav Dehuri and Dinesh Routray participated in the surprise raid. The seized vehicles were handed over to Gudiakateni police beat house, Odapada tehsil sources informed.
Notably, the district administration had prepared a blueprint few days back to conduct raids and had also issued show-cause to six tehsildars in the district, including Odapada tehsildar, for their alleged laxity and failure in curbing minor mineral smuggle.