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BARAMULLA: Illegal and indiscriminate sand mining and extraction from Nallah Viji at Batpora Rafiabad is posing a threat to fertile agricultural land and residential areas of the locality as without caring about the rules and safety sand mafia is unabatedly mining and extracting Sand,Gravel and Boulders from the Batpora and Dachinpaara Rafiabad. Locals who are from sikh community told KNB that “several times we tried to prevent and stop illegal sand extraction and excavation by the sand mafia but they came to beat us and threatened us with dire consequences as being in minority we fear about our lives and personal liberty that’s why we are now highlighting this issue through media”.

While expressing resentment and concern over illegal sand mining and extraction head of sikh community Mr Manjeet Singh while talking to Kashmir News Bureau told that the sand mafia has destroyed our agricultural land as the land is slowly turning barren and there is now also a threat of flood due to this weakening of the embankments of the Nallah.

Locals and sarpanch also while talking alleged that unchecked and unabated sand and Boulder extraction at Batpora and Dachinpaara Rafiabad has endangered many agricultural fields in the area.Sand mafia with over 30 tractors strip the Nallah beds for sand and boulders on daily basis from the sites close to several residential areas hinting that there is an unholy nexus between mafia and some officials.

It is pertinent to mention that the illegal mining and extraction has left many fertile agricultural land barren causing resentment among the residents and farmers and the mafia also threatens the sikh community of dire consequences if they tried to stop them but according to members of sikh community after they protested the illegal mining and extraction has stopped in day time and resumes in night.

Some other villagers while talking to Kashmir News Bureau told that “the mining and extraction is not an isolated incident but the mafia has been rampantly taking away sand,Gravel,boulders from the Nallah Viji.we often complained to authorities who prefer to turn a blind eye to the racket and play deaf”. When Contacted Executive engineer Irrigation and flood control Baramulla Mr GM Ganaie told Kashmir News Bureau that by tommorrw I will depute my men and AEE to the village and they will lodge an FIR against all thise who will be found involved in the illegal mining and extraction.