The Center updates mining rules, exempts practices of green clearance customary excavation of sand and land from sources located at Gram Panchayat for personal or community use in villages. With the Center amending the Act on Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation), the green clearance has been mandated not to be used for removal of sand deposits from agricultural fields following floods.
The ministry of environment has confirmed in its notice that manual mining extraction by the ‘kumhars’ (potter) for producing earthen pots, clay or sand by hand mining by tile manufacturers is excluded from environmental clearance requirements.
According to the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, “The receipt of representations for waiver of the requirement of prior environmental clearance for borrowing ordinary earth for roads and manually extracting lime shells (dead shell) etc. within the intertidal zone by the traditional community,”, said the ministry while making amendments to the mineral laws.
This requirement waving applies also to “Removal of sand deposits on agricultural fields after flood by farmers via the green clearance customary excavation from sources situated in Gram Panchayat”.
“Public activities, like desilting of village ponds/tanks, the building of village roads, ponds, and bunds undertaken under the Mahatma Gandhi National Employment Scheme, other government-sponsored schemes, Digging of wells for irrigation or drinking water purposes and digging of foundation for buildings and excavation of ordinary earth or clay for plugging of any breach caused in canal, nallah, drain, waterbody, etc., to deal with any disaster or flood-like situation upon orders of the District Collector or District Magistrate or any other competent authority as well as activities declared by the State Government under legislation or rules as non-mining activity shall not require a prior approval. .