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Rashmi Rekha Das

The Odisha government on Friday faced the wrath of Bhubaneswar Parliamentarian Aparajita Sarangi for its alleged failure to curb illegal sand lifting in Jayadev assembly constituency.

With increasing allegations of rampant sand lifting being carried out on Kuakhai and Kusabhadra riverbeds at Balipatna and Balianta, Sarangi accused an influential politician of lifting sand rampantly with the help of a leaseholder in gross violation of guidelines.

Addressing a presser, she alleged that the leaseholders are indulged in digging and lifting of sand on Kuakhai and Kusabhadra with the help of a JCB machine flouting all norms. An influential leader is encouraging such activities, she added.  

She further accused the politician of visiting the farmhouse of the leaseholder. 

Blaming the government, Aparajita said, “As per the lease condition, no JCB machine can be used during lifting of land. Secondly, sand lifting cannot be done after sunset. Also, no section should be made for lifting sand. The state government must ensure pillar posting during sand lifting.  Sand lifting must be carried out within the permitted areas. Violating these conditions, leaseholders are lifting thousands of tonnes of sand round-the-clock.  A powerful politician is backing such illegal activities. Nexus between the said leaseholder and the politician is responsible for unchecked sand lifting on the riverbeds. I just presented the opinions of the public. I also have visited the site several times and captured such pictures.” 

“The state government should put a curb on rampant sand lifting as resentment is brewing among the residents over the matter. Else, the government has to face the consequences,” she said.

The reaction of the district administration could not be obtained on the allegations.


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