Research Note on Buxwaha

Relevant Points 

Violations by Essel Mining




Additional Information

Kasia mine

2005 and 2010

The company mined nearly 100 million tonnes of iron ore worth Rs 3,101 crore from forest land without clearance.

The estimate could have been higher if the ore extracted during the1980s and 1990s was taken into account, but the CEC notes that the data for those years is missing. In addition, the CEC found that 18 hectares of virgin forest land, which lay outside the cleared area, was used by the company for mining and related activities.

Illegal Mining in Odisha


The company has mined 19.68 million tonnes of iron worth Rs 1,102 crore without an environmental clearance or in excess of it.

Essel Mining and Industries Ltd (EMIL), a subsidiary of the Aditya Birla Group, has been asked to pay a sum of about Rs 427 crore as compensation for excess production without lawful authority. The EMIL iron ore mine is located at Koira in Sundargarh district. Penalty- Essel Mining and Industries Ltd - Rs 427 crore.

Jilling Langalota mine

November 2002 to February 2005 and 1.64 million tonne from August 2005 to August 2009

The company continued to mine despite not having the requisite forest clearance in place.

According to the state forest department, as much as 286 million tonnes of iron ore was extracted during those years, which was worth Rs 13,898 crores.

  • Memorandum Of Action Taken on Second Report on Illegal Mining of Iron and Manganese Ores in The State of Odisha: JUSTICE M.B. SHAH COMMISSION OF INQUIRY: Link

Reason for Rio Tinto’s exit

  • After spending around USD 90 million over 14 years, the Australian company exited the project in 2017. The MP government invited fresh bids for the USD 90-billion diamond mine project. However, it had reduced the mining area to more than half of what was leased to Rio Tinto initially. 
  • It is partly because of local protests of villagers and labourers that emerged against Rio and their demands that were also promoted by NGOs that led to litigation in the court, and there were environmental clearances, bureaucratic and legal hurdles that Rio faced and they were asked to do underground mining that would have an increase their cost. (Source)
  • Rio Tinto was granted a prospecting license in 2006 after the Bunder pipes were discovered in 2004. Last month, HT had reported that the government shelved granting permission to mining corporation Rio Tinto to open a diamond mine in Madhya Pradesh, saying the plan endangers a rich forest area and a tiger corridor between the Panna Tiger Reserve and Nauradehi Wildlife Sanctuary. The report said that according to Rio Tinto, there are diamonds worth Rs 20,520 crore in Bunder. But environmentalists are concerned that the Rs 2,200 crore Bunder diamond mining project involves clearing 971 hectares of forest area in the Chhatarpur region. (Source)
  • “We analysed Rio’s exit and suggested that there was not a single reason behind it. Rio might have left because the diamond business was falling around the world and is predicted to fall further as more diamonds are mined in African countries and Russia. To them, the money invested so far is simply not worth the trouble bad press would bring,” said KuntalaLahiriDutt, one of the authors of the study and Professor in the Resource, Environment and Development (RE&D) programme in the Crawford School of Public Policy in Canberra-based Australian National University.

Notes on Tiger Conservation and Panna

  • Rajasthan's Ranthambore and Madhya Pradesh's Bandhavgarh and Panna are among 16 reserves whose tiger conservation plans have not been approved by National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA). Preparation of the tiger conservation plan is a legally mandated obligation on the part of state governments to get annual grants for the conservation of big cats. Out of 48 tiger reserves, tiger conservation plans for 32 have been approved and 16 others not. (Link)
  • The area in question is a significant wildlife habitat and serves as the buffer to Panna Tiger Reserve as also the dispersal area for spill overpopulation of tigers.
  • Based on research we have observed that the respective state governments have not complied with the tiger conservation plan. Preparation of the tiger conservation plan is a legally mandated obligation on the part of state governments to get annual grants for the conservation of big cats. The guidelines had been issued but not followed. The present government of Madhya Pradesh is also a party to not defaulting the orders of the Honorable Supreme Court in the case of Buxwaha Forest. Moreover, transparent information about the tiger population is not in the public domain. 

Case of Ken Betwa

  • The entire project is located within the reserve, directly submerging Over 58sqkm is in the core critical tiger habitat, deemed to be inviolate and sacrosanct as per law. The impact area will be far greater - construction, quarrying, mining, blasting, staff colonies, powerhouses etc., will disturb, dissect, disembowel, obliterate over 200sqkm of the tiger reserve, and all the wildlife within it. This includes over a dozen tigers, including breeding tigresses. Nearly half of Panna's breeding tigresses reside in the submergence area. (Source)

Notes on Open Cast Mining:

  • According to the Indian Bureau of Mines (IBM), among India's four diamond-reserve states – Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, and Odisha – Madhya Pradesh alone accounts for about 90.18 per cent. National Mineral Development Corporation (NMDC) is actively pursuing prospective diamond blocks in these states. Aditya Birla group’s EMIL plans to develop a fully mechanised opencast mine and state-of-the-art processing plant for recovery of diamonds with an investment of around Rs 2,500 crore. The company claims that the project, once operational, has the potential to become one of the largest diamond mines in the Asian region. (Source)
  • NMDC is actively pursuing grants of 3 PLs (prospecting license) that fall in the Kalyandurg area, Anantpur district of Andhra Pradesh. FAC recommended forest permission for drilling. Further, in Madhya Pradesh, NMDC has applied for 3 large area prospective blocks namely Damoh, Chhatarpur Panna Block-1 and Chhatarpur Panna Block-2 for diamond exploration. Tripartite MoU among DGM, MP, MPSMCL and NMDC was signed for geological and geophysical exploration in Madhya Pradesh.
  • NMDC has also applied for 12 additional Diamond prospective Blocks in Panna, Damoh, Sagar and Chhatarpur for exploration under Section 4(1) of the MMDR Act, 1957. As per the NMI data, based on the UNFC system as of 1.4.2015, all India reserves/resources of diamond have been placed at 31.83 million carats. 
  • Out of these, 0.95 million carats are placed under Reserve’s category and 30.87 million carats under the Remaining Resources category. By grades, about 2.37% of resources are of Gem variety, 2.64% of Industrial variety and bulk of the resources (95%) are placed under the Unclassified category. By States, Madhya Pradesh accounts for about 90.18% of resources followed by Andhra Pradesh 5.72% and Chhattisgarh 4.09%. [Source: Indian Minerals Yearbook 2019] 
  • The purpose of undertaking open cast mining would result in the creation of a pit several hundred meters deep. The deposit of overburden from the open cast mine would destroy the ecological habitat of the area.

Corporate Commitments to Stop Mining:

  • Individual companies have tried to bridge the divide between demand and supply centres by making commitments to not mine in particularly sensitive areas, such as World Heritage Sites. The International Council on Mining and Metals committed in 2003 through its membership of companies to stop mining in World Heritage Sites.
  • In 2016, they reissued a call for all companies to commit in this regard, largely owing to impacts on biodiversity the effectiveness of such commitments has yet to be quantified, through partnerships with groups such as the IUCN are being developed. Such a recognition of the limits of coexistence of mining and protected areas in some contexts, while the willingness to engage on mitigation measures of impact to allow for coexistence where possible, is a realistic and pragmatic way forward.

Examples of waste utilisation in India by large Mining Companies:

  • The National Mineral Development Corporation is setting up a 0.3-million-ton pig iron plant for the utilization of tailings.
  • The Kudremukh Iron Ore Company has formulated a project to reclaim 117 million tons of tailings to recover 21 million tons of concentrates.
    Source: TERI, 2001.

Notes on Local Migration linking to groundwater Groundwater crisis of this area:

  • Adivasi communities in the Panna district are losing their livelihood sources as the mining operations destroy natural resources and water bodies and make land unfit for farming. This situation goes against a range of safeguards in the Constitution of India under Article 244 Provided for self-governance in specified tribal-majority areas. The FifthSchedule protects Adivasi (tribal) people living in scheduled areas from the alienation of their lands and natural resources to non-tribals that protect the rights of Adivasis and their natural resources.
  • It also is a violation of the Forest Rights Act of 2006 and of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), which India is a signatory to. 
  • The terrible working conditions in the mines are a direct violation of legal provisions such as the labour rights included in the Mines Act (specifying wages, work safety, accident benefits and insurance, etc.), the Unorganised Workers’ Social Security Act 2008 that provides women with basic human rights protection at the workplace, and the Equal Remuneration Act of 1976 that lays down equal pay for equal work for all genders.
  • All these Acts are deliberately ignored by the mining companies and contractors in the Panna district. And last but not least, also the Indian national laws and procedures for environmental protection and sustainable extraction as laid down in the Environmental Protection Act 1986 and the MMDR Amendment Act 2010 and 2015 are not applied.
  • There are 11 National Parks and 11 Wildlife Sanctuaries in Madhya Pradesh, mostly located in Adivasi regions. In the name of protecting the environment and wildlife, Adivasi villages have been evicted from their original habitat. 
  • This also happened with the Panna Tiger Reserve. Villagers are no longer permitted to enter the forest to collect firewood, graze their cattle or collect forest products. Meanwhile, officials turn a blind eye to the illegal mining that is taking place inside the buffer zone of the Panna Tiger Reserve. Many Adivasi communities have been coaxed to give consent to relocation on verbal and false promises of better facilities and monetary benefits.
  •  Once evicted, they are faced with the challenges of finding new housing, sources of livelihood, access to water and firewood, education and medical facilities. The government does not provide any of this; monetary compensation for the evicted villages is considered the end of all State responsibility. The result is that many Adivasis end up as seasonal labour migrants, social cohesion breaks down, and only elderly persons who have no physical ability to migrate remain in the relocated villages. (Source)

Notes on Comprehensive Impact of Mining 

How Mining Affects Environment

  1. Air / Climate Change:
    • Surface mines may produce dust from blasting operations and haul roads. Many coal mines release methane, a greenhouse gas. Smelter operations with insufficient safeguards in place have the potential to pollute the air with heavy metals, sulphur dioxide, and other pollutants.
  • Lost CO2 uptake by forests and vegetation that is cleared, and CO2 emitted by machines (ch-2, pg 16)
  • The environmental impacts encompass both primary and secondary impacts: greenhouse gas emissions (using the carbon footprint, production weighted average greenhouse gas emissions, nitrous oxide emissions, and energy use), biodiversity impacts, air quality, land use and impacts (including erosion, terrestrial acidification) and waste, water consumption, noise, wildlife impacts, vegetation diversity (based on heavy metal in the soil), aquatic ecosystems, ground failures, metal depletion, human toxicity, freshwater toxicity, energy footprint (cumulative energy demand), fossil fuel depletion, and smog potential. (pg 25)
  • These toxic chemicals pollute the air, the diamond mining companies insert large amounts of ammonia under the lake beds to help extract minerals. (ch2)
  • These toxic chemicals from the mines may also end up in neighbouring communities due to wind carrying the pollutants. (ch2)
  • Dust particles created by the open-pit mines contribute to ground-level ozone. (ch2)
  • Machinery used in open-pit mines runs on chemicals that can destroy or weaken the upper ozone layer in those areas, which cause carcinogenic radiation, and damages crops).

2.Impact on Water and its resources:

    • The mining sector uses large quantities of water, though some mines do reuse much of their water intake. Mining throws sulphide-containing minerals into the air, where they oxidise and react with water to form sulphuric acid. This, together with various trace elements impacts groundwater, both from the surface and underground mines. 
  • There is potential for acid mine drainage and contaminant leaching. Erosion of soils and mine wastes into surface waters, impacts of wet tailings impoundments, waste rock, heap leach, and dump leach facilities on water quality which can be severe. (pg 15 & 16, ch-2) (Link)
  • Diamond mining companies insert large amounts of ammonia under the lake beds to help extract minerals. This harms the fish that live there.

3.Land & soil:

    • The movement of rocks due to mining activities and overburden (material overlying a mineral deposit that must be removed before mining) in the case of surface mines impacts land severely. These impacts may be temporary where the mining company returns the rock and overburden to the pit from which they were extracted. Many copper mines, for example, extract ore that contains less than 1% copper.
  • Mining can contaminate soils over a large area. Agricultural activities near a mining project may be particularly affected. Other impacts are deforestation, land degradation, biodiversity impact. (ch-2)
  • Soil degrades meaning that no plants would grow in the surrounding area. 
  • (Chapter 2 to be referred from the following link:
  1. Health & safety:
  • Mining operations range from extremely hazardous to being as safe or as dangerous as any other large scale industrial activity. Underground mining is generally more hazardous than surface mining because of poorer ventilation and visibility and the danger of rockfalls. The greatest health risks arise from the dust, which may lead to respiratory problems, and from radiation exposure (where applicable). [Source: Sustainable Development Networking Programme (SDNP, India)This is a gas pollutant created by the emissions from industrial facilities, motor vehicle exhaust, gas vapour, etc. Inhaling the gases causes lung problems, throat pain and asthma (ch2)
  1. Noise Pollution – mentioned under Rajasthan case study.
  2. Wildlife & biodiversity - Mining affects the environment and associated biodiversity through the removal of vegetation and topsoil, the displacement of fauna, the release of pollutants, and the generation of noise. (pg 16. ch2)

The most significant impact of mined diamonds in environmental terms is likely to be a land disturbance and the overall magnitude of this is dependent on the ecosystem in which the mining is occurring. There can be additional water use and biodiversity impacts dependent on where the mining is occurring. The carbon emissions of mining are highly dependent on location. Cold climates such as Siberia or Northern Canada have larger carbon emission impacts. Artisanal alluvial diamond mining has less carbon emission impacts.” –  Professor Saleem Ali.

Impact on Economic and Environmental Factors Associated with Mining-Related Displacement and Relocation:

  • The consequences of development projects consist not only of physical relocation to another territory but also of significant reduction of the inhabited area. Loss of land or its drastic reduction puts communities characterized by a land-based, hunting-gathering economy, with low occupational flexibility, at risk of multigenerational economic marginalization. Joblessness caused by loss of land, which affects both women and men, not only leads to a deterioration in their economic situation but also creates pathologies such as alcoholism and mental problems. (Source)
    • Environmental contamination caused by the implementation of development projects leads to long-term deterioration in the security of whole communities. The contamination of the Niger Delta and a few other regions of the world shows us how huge the impact of environmental problems maybe on the functioning of many people living in the immediate vicinity. 
    • Land, water and air pollution become a factor in long-term health problems. In many cases, the only way to maximize the level of security is forced migration from the area negatively affected by development projects to another location. Persons who had been previously displaced are therefore forced into another, "secondary", migration. 
  • The environmental problem observed inter alia in the aftermath of the Lesotho Highlands Water Project was the maybe maximum/peak that significant depletion of the local ecosystem. The affected people complained about the feeling of a large amount of forest in the course of the project, creating difficulties in access to firewood. Megaprojects can seriously decrease local environmental security. For local communities strongly dependent on resources found in a project’s immediate vicinity, its implementation can greatly affect their economic situation. (Source)

Notes on Data of Past Migration:

  • Between 1981 and 1986 major Indian coal companies have displaced more than 32,700 families (the estimates of displaced persons in Singrauli I-II alone are about 49,000). [source]
  • The development of aluminium mining in the region of Andhra Pradesh is another well-known case of MIDR (mining-induced displacement and relocation). The development of the NALCO Refinery Plant in Damanjodi has led to the displacement of fifteen settlements with about 597 families. Literature highlights the problems of the most vulnerable groups— indigenous people, illegal settlers, women and children displaced by mining. Potential risks affecting displaced persons are similar to those of other categories of DIDR (development induced displacement and relocation).
  • "There is widespread irrational exploitation of groundwater and a lack of long-term eco-friendly planning for resource utilization. There is enormous deforestation and indiscriminate and uncontrolled mining, and increased urbanization. In the Bundelkhand region, centralized water supply systems are laying an adverse load over the groundwater. The construction of dams and canals has increased soil salinity and brackishness in the region. There is wastage of water due to uncontrolled mining. In the Bundelkhand region, due to water pollution, many health problems arise."
  • The extraction of diamonds involves crushing, washing, sorting, and sorting of diamonds hence requires a lot of groundwater. In the pre-feasibility report of the project, the water requirement of the project is estimated at 5.9 million cubic meters per day. "To meet this requirement a seasonal nullah will be diverted by constructing a dam. The water storage in the reservoir is estimated at around 17 MCM (million cubic meters)," the report revealed, according to Deccan Herald. (Source)

Case Study

Human Ecological Impact of Mining - Rajasthan (Source)

  • Mining damages 20 times the lease area including forest land, pastureland and agricultural fields by way of overburden deposits and drainage (Valaiya 1990). 1990).
  • Though it generates employment, workers become disabled at the age of 40 due to mining-related diseases, air, water, and noise pollution. In the families surveyed, more than 70 per cent of workers suffer from some disease. In 63.2 per cent of cases the respondents themselves have been the victims. The reported types of diseases from which the workers have generally suffered were tuberculosis (4.8%) asthma (0.6%), malaria (49.7%), heat stroke (5.5%), liver disease (15.5%) and other diseases (23.6%). (page 6) (Source)
  • Despite a ban on any mining activity in forest land envisaged in the Forest Act, 1980, the Government of Rajasthan granted nearly 400 leases of marble mines in and around Sariska Tiger Reserve. 
  • This mining activity caused havoc to the environment by way of deforestation, degradation of agricultural land, pastures and hydrology of the area resulting in loss of conventional employment and hence income of the local people. 
  • Air and noise pollution due to mining activity affected the health of the mineworkers. Noise due to blasting accompanied by deforestation affected the habitat of the tiger and other wild animals in the Sariska Tiger Reserve. Data reveals that noise levels are comparatively higher in the active zones like drilling, blasting and mine service stations, which in nature form point sources only. Truck transport, tractor-trolley transport and heavy machineries like shovels and compressors also generate noise levels beyond tolerable limits. The noise levels measured by using digital decibel meters were found to be in the range of 96 to 125 dB. These are much above the limits of 75 dB prescribed by WHO for daytime industrial area decibel meters were found to be in the range of 96 to 125 dB. These are much above the limits of 75 dB prescribed by WHO for daytime industrial areas.
  • Local people led by Tarun Bharat Sangh (NGO) went to the Supreme Court of India (Tarun Bharat Sangh, Alwar v. Union of India & Ors) (Reference number (1993) INSC 209) against these illegal mining activities which threatened to jeopardize the ecosystem of the Tiger Reserve and its inhabitants. This case dealt with illegal mining activity in an area declared as Tiger Reserve. The petitioner, a voluntary organization interested in protecting the environment, approached the court complaining of the widespread illegal mining activity going on in the area declared as a Tiger Reserve in the State of Rajasthan. It prayed that in the interest of ecology, environment and rule of law, the activity should stop. It was alleged that notifications were prohibiting all mining activity, and yet the State Government had granted hundreds of licences for mining marble, dolomite and other materials and that such section was contrary to law.
  • Within the buffer zones of the national park, the Government of India consequently used notification declaring the entire Aravalli region (machinery groundwater, groundwater which also falls Bijolia) as an eco-sensitive area in general and banning mining activities in the Sariska area in particular. Since then, mining activities have come to a close but the mining lobby is still active to get the stay vacated and carry out mining illegally at someplace. (Source)

Causes of water scarcity based on a study, field survey and inputs of scientists and technologists(Link)

Groundwater quality degradation (Link): 

A huge water crisis is looming because of the following factors-

  1. Lack of reservoirs for storage in Bundelkhand.
  2. Lack of water conservation awareness among people, a careless attitude towards water crises, water conservation is not practised, negligence of traditional water conservation structures, low government planning, negligence of environment-related issues etc. 
  3. Uneven Rainfall over the year.
  4. Water crisis is not because of the shortage of rainfall but its availability, harsh climatic conditions and the problem also lie in people's attitude towards the violation of rules on forest resources.
    1. Issues neglected at the Policy-Planning levels and poor water management system in the name of development.
    2. Lack of suitable scientific study before implementing projects related to roads, forests and tube wells.
    3. Decreasing agriculture and changing cropping patterns demanding intensive water for irrigation. 

    Notes on Hydrogeochemical Evolution and Appraisal of Groundwater

    Quality in Panna District, Central India (Source)

      • The analysed samples revealed that the groundwater was contaminated with fluoride and nitrate. 
      • "Intense agricultural and mining/industrial activities make groundwater quality vulnerable to contaminants. This study conducted in one of the mining areas of the Panna district evaluated the factors influencing the groundwater hydrogeochemistry using water quality parameters and a multi-isotopic approach because groundwater is the only major source of drinking water. 
      •  Forty-five water samples comprising both shallow and deep aquifers were collected and analyzed for major ions, δ 18O, and δD. The geochemical data were used to characterize and classify water samples based on a multitude of ion plots and diagrams.
      • The groundwater in the region is found to be contaminated with fluoride and nitrate. The sources for fluoride are mostly geogenic in nature. The alkaline nature of groundwater triggers the replacement of the exchangeable fluoride from minerals like biotite/muscovite and results in its enrichment.
      • In addition, it is contributed through the leaching of fluorides from granitic rocks, abundantly present in the study area. The weathering of these fluoride-bearing minerals releases fluoride into the groundwater. On the other hand, nitrate enrichment is mainly attributed to leaching from untreated sewage systems and agricultural runoff containing nutrients from excess use of fertilizers. 
      • The stable isotopic composition for most of the collected samples was found to be near the local meteoric water line (LMWL), i.e., the origin of groundwater is meteoric in principle; however, the point away from the LMWL might favour exchange with rock minerals and evaporation processes. This study sets an important background for decision-makers to take suitable countermeasures from the public health perspective for sustainable water resources management. " (Source)
    • The decline in groundwater level for Chhatarpur & Panna District - In 2019, the ground water level for Panna District was 4.11 meters below ground level. The ground water level of Panna District fell gradually from 9.47 meters below ground level in 2015 to 4.11 meters below ground level in 2019. Link 
    • In 2019, the groundwater level for Chhatarpur District was 4.16 meters below ground level. The groundwater level of Chhatarpur District fell gradually from 9.91 meters below ground level in 2015 to 4.16 meters below ground level in 2019. 

    Relevant Cases:

    1. In Shri Sachidanand Pandey vs. The State of W.B. (1987) 2 SCC 295: 
    2. Courts cannot be asked to assess the environmental impact of the pipelines on the wildlife but can at least oversee that those with established credentials and who have the requisite expertise have been consulted and that their recommendations have been abided by, by the State Government. If it is found that the recommendations have not been so abided by, the mere fact that large economic costs are involved should not deter the Courts from barring and if necessary, undoing the development."

    3. In Bharat Jhunjhunwala vs UOI &Ors, PIL No. 4820 of 2018:
    4. “27. The raison d'etre of discretionary power is that it promotes decision-makers to respond appropriately to the demands of particular situations. When the decision-making is policy-based, the judicial approach to interfere with such decision making becomes narrower. In such cases, in the first instance, it is to be examined as to whether the policy in question is contrary to any statutory provisions or is discriminatory/arbitrary or based on irrelevant considerations. If the particular policy satisfies these parameters and is held to be valid, then the only question to be examined is as to whether the decision in question conforms with the said policy."

    5. Steel Authority of India and Ors., Vs Tycoon Traders and Ors., Civil Appeal No. 4026 of 2014:
    • SAIL had advertised for e-auction of 1 lakh MT of iron ore from Kemmanagundi mines. 
    • On 13.03.2007, the auction was held and Respondent No. 1 was declared as the successful bidder.
    • The Appellant paid Rs. 176 lakhs being 15 % of the total sale value on 15.03.2007.
    • SAIL informed Respondent that the Contract was revalidated by letter dated 27.07.2009 till 26.11.2009 for 4 months commencing from 27.07.2009. It wrote to the Principal Conservator and Chief Wildlife Warden, Karnataka for renewal of permission granted for lifting and transporting iron ore fines through Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary.
    • The Principal Conservator declined to grant permission for the removal of 1 lakh tonne of iron ore fines by plying vehicles.
    • The High Court held that the contract stood frustrated and asked SAIL to refund the entire sum of money received from the Respondent.
    • The Hon’ble High Court further held that the Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary has been declared as “Tiger Reserve” and it required to be maintained as “inviolate” for tiger population and permission which has been refused cannot be granted because of Section 38 (v) of the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972. Writ Petition was allowed and SAIL was directed to refund the entire amount within 4 months from the date of the order.
    • The Hon’ble Apex Court further held that the contract was hit by Section 38 (v) of the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972 and the object of the contract is forbidden by law.

    Relevant Documents:

    • Environmental Impact Assessment & Environmental Management Plan For Chattarpur – I & II Underground Expansion Project (Pathakhera Area, Western Coalfields Limited) (Expansion in production from 0.41 MTPA TO 1.00 MTPA and Enhancement of mine lease area from 356.370 ha to 825.338 ha) 2008 (Link)
    • The projects were approved for 0.21 & 0.20 MTPA level of production with a capital investment of Rs. 19.25 crores & Rs. 20.76 Crs for Chattarpur – I & II UG mine respectively. The mines produced 0.181 & 0.21 Mt during last year i.e., 2006-07. Now the mines are likely to produce 0.45 & 0.24 MTPA of coal respectively. Given the maximum / peak production capacity achievable from these mines, environment clearance is being solicited for 1.00 MTPA for Chattarpur – I & II UG combined.
    • Diversion of 6017.00 ha. of forest land in favour of Rashtriya Jal Vikas Abhikaran for development of Ken-Betwa Link Project from Distt. Chattarpur, Panna and Tikamgarh, Madhya Pradesh – reg.: Link

    “The total number of trees to be felled/affected at FRL under this project has been estimated at 1804962 Nos. The forest land proposed for the submergence area of the project is attached to the buffer line of Panna Tiger Reserve.”

    • A Comprehensive Analysis of Panna Tiger Reserve's Phenomenal Recovery in Tiger Population: After 2009 From Security Viewpoint:

    “This study of scientific management of a Protected Area (PA) (primarily based on security perspective) has taken the example of Panna Tiger Reserve (PTR), Madhya Pradesh. Extensive issues of wildlife protection and security issues are analyzed in past, present and future context over 5 years”.Link

    • Geological Report on Exploration of Diamonds: Bunder Project Area at Village Sagoria, Tehsil Bakshwaha, District Chhatarpur, Madhya Pradesh (Area 364 Hect Out of 954 Hect)

    This report summarizes the work completed by Rio Tinto Exploration India Private Limited within Bunder Prospecting License during September 2006 and September 2011.Link

    • Guidance Document For Preparation Of Tiger Conservation Plan (A Supplement To Technical Document – NTCA/01/07)Link

    Discusses General Principles of Management, Data Collection/Analysis, Buffer area of a Tiger Reserve, Wildlife Management, Mitigation.

    • Guidelines for the preparation of Tiger Conservation Plan (Link)

    “The objectives of the Tiger Conservation Plan are to ensure: 

    1. Protection of tiger reserve and providing site-specific habitat inputs for a viable population of tigers, co-predators and prey animals without distorting the natural prey-predator ecological cycle in the habitat; 
    2. ecologically compatible land uses in the tiger reserves and areas linking one protected area or tiger reserve to another for addressing the livelihood concerns of local people, to provide dispersal habitats and corridors for spillover population of wild animals from the designated core areas of tiger reserves or tiger breeding habitats within other protected areas; 
    3. forestry operations of regular forest divisions and those adjoining tiger reserves are not incompatible with the needs of tiger conservation.
    • The Wild Life (Protection) Amendment Act, 2006: (Link)
    • Panna Tiger Reserve boundaries: (Link)

    Discusses the boundaries, area scope of Panna and Chhatarpur.

    • Pre-Feasibility Report for Proposed Bunder Diamond Block:Link

    Discusses the processes and the project background.

    • Groundwater Quality Groundwater quality in the district is fresh with EC values ranges from98 to1428 µs/cm at 250C. Nitrate was observed in the range of 10 to 194 mg/l whereas fluoride ranges from 0.02 to 1.74 mg/l (pg 10, ch-4)(Link)
    • Groundwater quality

      : Excessive nitrate content is reported in the district at Maximum concentration at Satkhedi, Shagarh, Chhatarpur Dalpathpur, Hurra, Kesli, Khurai, Rehli. High nitrate content in groundwater of these areas is perhaps from seepage of sewage into the groundwater system of the area, causing local pollution and contamination of groundwater (pg 77, ch-5)(Link)
    • Chhatarpur district Groundwater categorised as semi-critical according to CGWB:

    Five blocks come under the semi-critical category with the stage of groundwater development being Badamalhera 75.57%, Buxwaha 81.9%, Chhatarpur 91.73%, Nowgoan 87.44% and Rajnagar 73.31% - govt report 2018 (ch-4, 2nd para). There are 3 (semi-critical) out of 8 Blocks (73,78 & 81 % Stage of Development in Nowgaon, Chhatarpur and Baxwaha respectively. (ch-7) (Source)

    • The decline in groundwater level for Chhatarpur & Panna District -

    In 2019, the groundwater level for Panna District was 4.11 meters below ground level. The ground water level of Panna District fell gradually from 9.47 meters below ground level in 2015 to 4.11 meters below ground level in 2019. (Source)

    •  Bunder Diamond Executive Summary(Link)

    The 954ha lease area is fully in Bakswaho Protected Forest. The buffer zone or study area is spread over two districts namely Chhatarpur and Sagar. There are 62 Census villages in the study area, out of which only 57 are inhabited.

    Additional Information:

    • Further reading on Rio Tinto exit. Link Link 2
    • Panna Tiger Reserve (PTR) in Madhya Pradesh (MP) was included in the global network of biosphere reserves by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO).