Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Cuttack, May 12:
The Odisha High Court Monday granted interim stay on cancellation of lease agreements of eight mines.
A division bench of the High Court comprising of justices Indrajit Mohanty and Biswanath Rath conducting a hearing in the matter granted interim stay on the cancellation of leases of these mines.
The division bench while directing the state government to file its reply in the matter has fixed the next date of hearing in the matter for June 29.
The mines which were granted interim stay against cancellation of their lease deeds are Odisha Manganese & Minerals, M/s Narayani Sons & Pvt Ltd, Avin Jain, Tareni Minerals Pvt Ltd, Kalinga Mining Corporation, Odisha Manganese Minerals Ltd, B D Patnaik Minerals Pvt Ltd and Om & Mines Ltd.
The state government had served notices to the leaseholders of these mines to reply back as to why leases of these mines should not be cancelled.
The state government during an earlier hearing had through an affidavit told the court that while the government had granted leases to 18 mines it had served show cause notices to eight mines pertaining to cancellation of their lease agreements. The concerned eight firms had moved the High Court against the state government’s decision.
It may be noted that the state Cabinet at its meeting on January 5 this year decided to auction all other mines in the state excluding that of coal. The state government apart from deciding that all mines awaiting lease renewal will have to participate in the auction process and issued a notification on January 12 in this regard.
However, the High Court on January 16 issued an interim stay on the notification and served notices to different parties in the matter after the government’s decision was challenged in the High Court. The state government during hearing on April 29 had through an affidavit told the court that the government had granted leases to 18 mines it had served show cause notices to eight mines.
The petitioners were represented by senior advocates Rajat Rath and Sanjit Mohanty and lawyers Sarada Prasad Sarangi and Pamy Rath.