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Action likely against Jindal firm for violating apex court order


Bangalore : The Karnataka government is set to take legal action against Jindal Steel Works (JSW) for transporting 9,600 metric tonnes of iron ore, valued at Rs.4.3 crore, in violation of a Supreme Court order, a senior official said late Monday.

“We are waiting for the government order to take legal action against JSW Steels for transporting iron ore to its plant at Tornagallu in Bellary district after the Supreme Court July 29 suspended all mining operations, including transportation in the district,” state mines department deputy director B.N. Shankar told IANS.

The department Sunday seized about 7,000 tonnes from a single rake of 57 rail wagons and 2,600 tonnes from 246 trucks that were stationed in the JSW’s Vijayanagar steel plant at Toranagal, about 30 km from Bellary and 330 km from here.

“JSW transported the iron ore from the state-run NMDC (National Mineral Development Corporation Ltd) mines in the district Saturday (July 30) even after we informed the company about the apex court order. We tracked the massive quantity in the wagons and trucks through GPRS (general packet radio service) system,” Shankar said.

The department also seized another 3,500 tonnes of iron ore valued at Rs.1.6 crore from Janki Corporation Ltd plant at Hagari near Sandur in the district on the same day as the quantity was transported in violation of the top court’s order.

The Bellary-based Janki Corporation plant was set up in 2004 to manufacture sponge iron with an installed capacity of 6,000 tonnes and 15megawatt power plant

“Transportation of the iron ore after the apex court suspended all mining operations amounts to contempt of court as the companies have violated its order even after it was brought to their notice,” Shankar pointed out.

The cost of mining one metric tonne of iron ore is about Rs.3,000 at the pit head and transporting it to the plant site from the pit head is about Rs.1500 and more per tonne depending on the distance.

The ore seized at Janki plant originally belonged to Fomento Mines Company at Sandur and was bought by the company for its sponge plant at Hagari. It was transported in a rake of 57 wagons from Yeshwantnagar railway station at Sandur.