Maharashtra government on Monday said that whoever is involved in illegal dredging of sand from rivers and creeks would be booked under the stringent provisions of the MCOCA, reports zeenews.india.com.
Minister of State for Revenue promised strict action after the uniformization of the law.
At this point, the minister intervened and declared that MCOCA would be invoked against whoever is involved in illegal sand dredging including officials or even police.
Sand mining is a practice that is used to extract sand, mainly through an open pit. However, sand is also mined from beaches, inland dunes and dredged from ocean beds and river beds. It is often used in manufacturing as an abrasive, for example, and it is used to make concrete. As communities grow, construction requires less wood and more concrete, leading to a demand for low-cost sand. Sand is also used to replace eroded coastline.
Another reason for sand mining is for the extraction of minerals such as rutile, ilmenite and zircon, which contain the industrially useful elements titanium and zirconium. These minerals typically occur combined with ordinary sand, which is dug up, the valuable minerals being separated in water by virtue of their different densities, and the remaining ordinary sand re-deposited.
Dredging Today Staff, July 16, 2012