Karnataka HC, Legal News, ET LegalWorld – Legal Firms

BENGALURU: Mere manufacturing M-sand would not amount to violation of Mines And Minerals (Development And Regulation) Act also known as MMDR Act, the high court has observed in a recent judgement.

However, since the building stone is used for the manufacture of M-sand, it is required that a proper permit/licence as regards the building stone and documentary proof relating thereto be made available by the petitioner” Justice Suraj Govindaraj has said in his order while declining to quash the proceedings against Msrs SVB Stone Crushers, Tumakuru.

Dismissing the petition, the judge has noted that there is a prohibition for stone crushing without a licence.

“Criminal action could be initiated if any person were to manufacture M-sand by crushing building stone or any other stone without obtaining a licence in Form-C under the Karnataka Regulation of Stone Crushers Act of 2011” the judge has added.

“The petitioner has to place on record as regards from where he has got the building stone or any stone used for manufacturing of M-sand and if those documents are in order, no offence could be said to be made out. However, if the building stone or any other stone is used without necessary documents for manufacturing of M-sand, the same would continue to be an offence under the MMDR Act. This is a matter which requires trial,” the judge has said.

Dwelling further, the judge has also held that a geologist is authorized to initiate criminal proceedings under the MMDR Act, within his own jurisdiction.

The petitioner has challenged the proceedings in the private complaint lodged by the Geologist before the Principal Civil Judge and JMFC, Kunigal, Tumakuru district on February 19,2019.

It was alleged in the said complaint that the petitioner, though had obtained consent for operation, without obtaining Form-C, had carried out stone crushing activities resulting in the manufacture of M-Sand which amounted to an offence under the MMDR Act, Karnataka Minor Minerals Concession Rules and the Stone Crushers Act,2011.

The petitioner had denied of having indulged in any stone crushing activities and argued that M- Sand is not a notified minor mineral.

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