Bhubaneswar (BBS): The State Government on Saturday decided to prepare a plan for massive transportation of minerals through railways and to initiate steps to ease the problem of traffic congestion caused by mineral carrying trucks.
Presiding over the State level task force meeting on mining activities here, Chief Secretary J K Mohapatra asked the Paradip Port Trust and the Directorate of Mines to decide the ideal number of trucks to be allowed for transportation of minerals.
The PPT representatives present at the meeting said that the port has the capacity handle 1200 to 1500 trucks per day.
Considering different dimensions of the problem, the Chief Secretary asked PPT Chiarman and director of mines to jointly work out the actual loading of trucks from originating points and unloading capacity of the port and suggest measures to resolve the problem.
They were asked to submit their report within two weeks.
He also advised the PPT authorities to adopt alternative mechanism for scaling up unloading capacity of the port.
Considering the allegation of miners regarding high transport cost charged by transporters in Odisha, Mohapatra asked the transport department to strictly implement the approved district specific rates for transportation of minerals by trucks.
The meeting resolved to take exemplary penal action against the violations on this account.
The Transport Department was asked to create off-road transit points for trucks at strategic locations to reduce the jam of trucks on roads which create obstacles for movement of passenger vehicles.
The Steel and Mines department was asked to make use of Google arch for monitoring whether actual mining is being done within specified boundaries.
Since the mine boundaries have been digitised, monitoring can be done through remote sensing mechanism. The data availed from remote sensing can be inspected through actual field verification to determine the extent of violation, if any, he added.
Earlier, the State Government has constituted a sub-committee comprising mining, railway and transport authorities to study the transport strength of roads and movement of vehicles at various points.
The committee has been asked to prepare a draft transportation plan with a direct bearing on the extraction of minerals and issue of permits to the transporters.