The Orissa High Court has disposed of the writ petition filed by challenging the Odisha steel and mines department’s order on rejection of revival application of the mining lease granted to HIndaco in Maliparvat Bauxite Mining Project in Koraput district.
The state government had rejected the revival of mining lease to Hindalco over an area of 268.11 hectares in Aligaon, Kakaramba and other villages under the Pottangi Tehsil of the Koraput district citing “the delayed action taken by the lessee company for obtaining environmental clearance”.
The process regarding grant of environmental clearance has been revived before the Environment Appraisal Committee of the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC). In that view of the matter, it is directed that the impugned order dated 12th October, 2022 will be treated as being kept in abeyance till such time, the pending process before the MoEF&CC and the Expert Appraisal Committee (EAC) regarding grant of environmental clearance is not complete.
The effect of this will be that during the said process, no steps will be taken by the Department of Steel and Mines, Government of Odisha to grant the lease in question to any other third party”, the division bench of Chief Justice Dr. S Muralidhar and justice M S Raman ordered.
The Maliparvat bauxite mining lease was awarded to the Hindalco Industries Limited in 2007. The local villagers, however, opposed the project arguing that 36 perennial streams flow down from the Maliparvat, which was the source of water for villagers for their agricultural and drinking purposes