The Ludhiana police on Tuesday arrested a man allegedly for illegally sand mining. Beside the activity being illegal what surprised the police and people together was the method and the machine employed to extract sand from the river.
The accused, police said, 35-year-old Harmeet Singh, bought a second hand motor boat costing Rs 50 lakh, from surat in Gujarat and other China made equipment for Rs 60 lakhs.
The motor boat is fitted with a drilling equipment which can extract sands from the river bed which then through a connected pipeline can be emitted at the shore.
The workers at the shore collect the sand and dry them before selling them in the black market.
What is uprising more is that similar machines and equipments are used in extracting salt in Gujarat.
Police said, it took them 10-15 minutes to dismantle the equipments arrangement, hinting how easy and convenient it is for the illegal miners to set up the arrangement for extracting sand.
Police also said that the accused has been doing it for about two months before it came to their notice, saying generally such activities are done at night at secluded locations to avoid detection by the authorities.
The accused had reportedly closed all the kuccha roads going towards illegal mining centre, setting up and dismantling the structure on everyday basis.
Mining of sand is generally stalled when the Satlj river is gushing with water but with this equipment, Harmeet Singh was able to dig out sand even the river is flowing with heavy water.
The police arrested Harmeet Singh red handed when the mining operation was going on.
The entire equipment was seized and Harmeet was produced in court on Wednesday.