Joda: The district administration here has formed a Task Force and planned to install CCTVs to check the mineral smuggling at railway sidings in the Joda mining circle of Keonjhar district.
In several cases the local police and Forest officials have been successful in detecting the illegally extracted minerals, a report said.
According to the report, police carried out raids near Dhatika village under Bamebari police limits in Keonjhar Monday when the mineral mafia was loading illegally extracted iron ore with a payload machine on two trucks.
Fourteen tonnes of iron ore was loaded on the two trucks. Police arrested two people, seized two trucks and a payload machine at Dhatika village. The arrested were identified as driver Jaysingh Munda and Gopal Bhadra.
Police also registered a case against the two and produced them in court Tuesday. It was learnt that the mineral mafia has been dumping illegally mined minerals in the area from various parts of the region and supplying them outside the state.
While such cases are coming to the fore at regular intervals, it seems the Mines department has no clue regarding such illegal mining. The state and district level squads were formed to detect such cases, but now the job is being undertaken by police and Forest officials.
Meanwhile, Collector Asish Thakre formed a district level task force committee here, comprising officials of the mines, Forest deparmants, regional transport office, police and the State Pollution Control Board, Tuesday, to check mineral smuggling.
He directed the officials to install CCTV cameras at railway sidings where mineral smuggling often takes place. Notably, in January this year, forest officials had seized 35 tonnes of high grade manganese in Nayagad forest.