SC allows mining in 63 blocks in Bellary

Considering the shortage of iron ore faced by steel makers, the Supreme Court allowed lease holders of 63 'B' category ore mines in Karnataka's Bellary district to resume mining operation.

But the court maintained the suspension order for all mining along the Andhra-Karnataka border till the border dispute between the two states is resolved. Also, the apex court cancelled the leases of 49 'C' category mines.

Iron and steel industry is said to be facing severe shortage of the raw material owing to ban on mining. It may be recalled that the court prohibited all mining in the area on July 29 2011 following reports of large scale illegal mining.

Later, the court permitted 18 'A' category mines to resume mining if they take steps to restore the area's ecology and pay compensatory allowances.