Sharmili Mallick

Jharsuguda/Balasore: Illegal sand mining activities seem to be on the rise with two different cases being reported from Jharsuguda and Balasore districts today.

In one such incident, Panchapada Revenue Inspector (RI) and Assistant RI had gone to the Panchapada ghat along the Ib River in Jharsuguda after complaints of rampant sand smuggling.

However, according to sources, a member of the sand mafia identified as Aman Sharma manhandled and even threatened the RI with dire consequences.

It is being alleged that though the concerned authorities have permitted mining in five sites, smugglers are engaged in mining activities in several more places along the Ib River.

Meanwhile after the incident, the RI filed a written complaint with the local Tehsildar and lodged an FIR at the Jharsuguda Police Station. Sharma is absconding after the incident, informed sources.

In another incident, the villagers of Rajnagar today detained 12 sand-laden tractors in Kuanrpur area under Jaleswar of Balasore district.

It is being alleged that sand was being illegally transported to West Bengal from Balasore.