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G.S.T. is to be paid on the sale value of the mineral purchased in the e-auction shall be borne by the buyer directly to the lessee and the lessee would be fully responsible for all the necessary compliances as may be required under the Act. Further directions were given to the Monitoring Committee to prepare appropriate proforma and also to take steps for carrying proper Tax Identification Number of the respective lessees on the invoices as may be required. The case further stated that The Supreme Court should not lie entrapped within the confines of any of the relevant statutes. The mechanism provided by any of the statutes in question would be ineffective in dealing with the extraordinary situation that has arisen on account of large-scale illegalities in the operation of mines.


Samaj Parivartana Samudaya and Ors. vs. State of Karnataka and Ors. is a landmark case that highlighted the issue of illegal mining activities in the Bellary district of Karnataka, India. This case is significant as it not only highlighted the loss of revenue to the State but also the fact of degradation of the environment and the adverse impact on the livelihoods of local communities caused due to such activities.

The petitioner, Samaj Parivartan Samudaya, a non-governmental organization, along with other petitioners approached the Supreme Court of India, seeking the court’s intervention to stop illegal mining activities in the Bellary District. The petitioner stated that the mining companies were knowingly violating the environmental laws and the livelihoods of the local communities present there.

The Supreme Court took over the matter and directed the Central and State Governments to take necessary actions to prevent the illegal mining activities that are being carried out. The Court also formed a special committee, the Central Empowered Committee (CEC), to investigate and report on the allegations of illegal mining

The report that the CEC submitted, confirmed the allegations of illegal mining activities in the Bellary District. The report highlighted that the environmental laws were violated, causing the loss of revenue to the state, and an adverse impact on the lives and livelihoods of the local communities. Based on that report, the Supreme Court ordered the suspension of the illegal activities of mining in the Bellary district. Further, the court ordered the mining companies to pay compensation for all the damages that have been caused to the environment and the communities that have been affected. The compensation given by the mining companies was mainly paid to the district administration, which was later disbursed to the affected people.

The court’s intervention in the Samaj Parivartana Samudaya case was a significant case towards ensuring compliance with environmental laws and the protection of the right of local communities. The case highlighted the need for effective regulation of the mining sector and the importance of holding the mining companies in case of violation of laws.

The case brought several new reforms in the mining sector. The Karnataka Government made certain changes on the recommendation of the Supreme Court of India, which resulted in the closure of several illegal mines and the suspension of such mining activities in the Bellary district. The government introduced new mining policies to regulate mining activities in the state.


  •  Article 21 Right to life
  • Article 48A Duty of the State to protect the Environment
  • Article 51A (g) Duty of the citizen
  • Article 142 Complete Justice
  • Article 226 and Article 32 Writ of High Court and Supreme Court


The Court after the report dated 29.04.2011 and 6.5.2011 directed all mining and transportation operations to be stopped in respect of mining leases dealt with the Report of the CEC and also ordered them to constitute a Joint Team for carrying out the survey and demarcation of the 99 mining leases in the District Bellary. The court after examining the report of CEC dated 28.7.2011 regarding the Reclamation and Rehabilitation of the Iron Ore Mines and associated issues in the Bellary district, further directed CEC to submit its report on Environment Impact Assessment on account of the mining works in the district of Tumkur and Chitradurga. The CEC submitted its report which confirmed all the allegations of illegal mining in the district of Bellary. The CEC prepared guidelines following the order of the court which constituted carrying out time-bound reclamation and rehabilitation, to ensure scientific and sustainable mining, to ensure environment-friendly mining and related activities, etc. Based on the CEC report, the Supreme Court ordered the suspension of mining activities in the Bellary district.


In conclusion, the Samaj Parivartana Samudaya case was a significant milestone in fighting illegal mining activities in India. This case is a perfect example of how public interest litigation can be used to hold the government and private entities accountable for their actions. The case demonstrates the importance of protecting the environment and the available rights to the locals, especially in an area that is rich in resources where exploitation of natural resources can have adverse consequences. The Samaj Parivartana Samudaya case stands as a testament to the power of public interest litigation in protecting the natural environment and the rights available to the local communities. It highlights the need for effective regulations and accountability in the mining sectors to ensure sustainable and equitable development. The case has set a precedent for future related cases, demonstrating the importance of protecting the environment and the rights of local communities, and the role of the judiciary in upholding these values.

This Article is written by Sushila Saha, Department of Law, Calcutta University.


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