Madurai Bench In Favour Of VV Mineral Mining

VV Mineral Single BenchThe Madurai bench of the Madras High Court, granted an interim stay on its single judge order of 28th October. VV Mineral, said to be the country’s largest manufacturer and exporter of Garnet and Ilmenite, is at the benefitting end. The company won’t have to pay Rs. 76.67 crore to the commissioner of Excise duty that was to be given earlier as Central Excise from 2011 to 2014.

A writ appeal filed by the commissioner of central excise challenging the order was presented to the division bench of Justices V Ramasubramanian and N Kirubakaran.

After receiving the show cause notice issued by the commissioner of central excise on 26th December, 2014, VV Mineral Mining did not delay in challenging it and moved to the high court bench. VV Minerals India claimed that extracting minerals from sand, technically falls under the category of ‘mines’, thus legally defending that the minerals were supposed to be exempted from excise duty.

Also, VV Mineral was never provided with all the documents required to help the firm give an effective reply, said VV Mineral Vaikundarajan, Managing Director.

The bench directed the commissioner to provide documents on which the show cause notice was issued and to provide all the other documents that might be needed. Still, the commissioner failed to provide the documents on time. Justice S Vaidyanathan repetitively asked the excise office to provide the documents. In the end, the commissioner got upset over the order and preferred the appeal.

Thus the division bench decided to issue an interim stay on the order passed on October 28 and adjourned the hearing.


The High Court Finally Rules In The Favour Of The Mining Companies: VV Mineral Vaikundarajan

vv-mineralOn July 29th, 2015, almost three years after the alleged thorium scam was brought to light, the Tamil Nadu High Court in a landmark judgment called the blanket ban proposed and imposed by the Government of Tamil Nadu, a mistake.

Three years ago in 2013, the state government of Tamil Nadu (TN) had blanket banned the mining of beach minerals across all coasts of the said state.

The ban included minerals such as rutile, garnet and illimenite which are one of the highest earning export products in India.

The TN government then constituted a committee that would probe the matter and draw meaningful conclusions on necessary policy changes keeping in mind the needs and demands of mining as an industry.

A petition was filed by beach sand mining companies of the state. Ruling by it, the court held that the ban was in contravention of the provisions of the Mines and Minerals Development and Regulation Act and Mineral Concession Rules.

While imposing the blanket ban the TN government conveniently forgot to consider the fact that 50,000 Tamilians were dependent on mining as a profession.

The absurd blanket ban has resulted in total cessation of the mining industry in the state of Tamil Nadu.

The TN High Court went a step further and dismissed the  findings of the government appointed committee and suggested that a committee run by a Supreme or High Court judge will be more effective unbiased.

VV Mineral was one of the main petitioners before the High Court and has welcomed the verdict with aplomb and positivity.


Read More Information on this article on The Hindu.