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Meghalaya: Govt releases guidelines for seized coal

Amid a lot of media reports of illegal transportation of coals in Meghalaya, the Meghalaya Government on Friday issued detailed guidelines for the transportation of seized coals in the state from various districts towards Assam.

The Supreme Court earlier, directed that the seized coal shall be dealt with by the State in accordance with Section 21 of the Act, 1957, and the State can decide on taking action against the illegal coal mining and the cases have to be dealt with in accordance with the law.

After several media reports about illegal transportation of coals in Meghalaya, the government of Friday issued guidelines for the transportation of seized coals in the state from various districts towards Assam.

The Supreme court recently directed that the seized coal shall be dealt by the State in accordance with Section 21 of the Act, 1957. The court further stated that the state can decide on taking action against the illegal coal mining and the cases have to be dealt with in accordance with the law.

The Mining and Geology Department has laid down some procedures to allow transportation of seized coal after its disposal through public action:

1.Consignment carrying auctioned coal shall be allowed for transportation only with the High-Security Mineral Transport Challan (MTC) containing hologram and fugitive ink to be issued by the DMR.

2. The truck number, route, and destination shall be indicated in MTC and the consignor should use the only route mentioned in the MTC.

3. The DMR shall intimate the issuance of Mineral Transport Challans to the concerned Superintendent of Police and Commissioner of Transport along with route of transportation and destination,

4. The Mineral Transport Challan(MTC) shall be stamped as Auctioned Coal’ with internal secret marking.

5. The Superintendent of Police shall ensure checking of vehicles by Police on National Highways and Roads to detect illegal coal transportation within their jurisdiction.

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6. The concerned Deputy Commissioner shall station a joint team consisting of Police, DMR officials, and Transport Department at the junction of weighbridge-cum-check gates of Transport Department or DMR check gates to divert all the goods laden trucks including coal-laden trucks from the main road towards weighbridge-cum-check gate.

7. Joint team shall check all the goods carrying trucks for necessary documents

8. Joint team shall detect coal-laden trucks without valid Mineral Transport Challan and seize the vehicle, and shall register the case under Section 21 of Mines and Minerals (Development & Regulation) Act, 1957

9. The Superintendent of Police concerned shall depute at least two (2) Police personnel to each weighbridge-cum-check gate in his jurisdiction to detect vehicles carrying coal illegally.

10. The Mines Royalty Inspector (MRI)/Assistant Mines Royalty Inspector (Asst. MR) of the DMR check gate/Transport Department’s weighbridge-cum-check gates with the assistance of Police shall inspect all the goods carrying trucks at the Checkgate to detect coal-laden trucks.

11. The MRI/Asst. MRI shall physically inspect coal trucks, verily Mineral Transport Challan, and place his seal and signature on MTC to prevent multiple uses.

12. The MRI/Asst. MRI and Police at Checkgate shall seize the trucks carrying coal illegally and the case shall be registered under Section 21 of the MMDR Act, 1957.

13. The MRI/Asst. MRI shall maintain the register on details of coal trucks passed through the check gate and monthly statements shall be sent to the DMR for reconciliation.

14. The MRI/Asst. MRI of the Checkgate shall ensure video recording of all consignment of coal passed through check gate and footage shall be stored for at least one year.

15. The Transport Department shall ensure that trucks are not carrying coal in excess of quantity permitted by the Mining and Geology Department vide Notification No. MG 94/2011/Pt 1/31 dated 10.07.2020 and shall take necessary action in respect of overloaded trucks.

16. The Transport Department shall ensure that CCTV cameras installed at weighbridge are functioning and shall share the CCTV footage with DMR every month.

17. The DMR shall submit a report on transportation of auctioned coal indicating the number of challans issued, route, and destination to the Government.

18. The Deputy Commissioner and Superintendent of Police of concerned District shall ensure that no illegal transportation of coal takes place in the of transporting the auctioned coal within their respective jurisdiction.

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