While the authorities seized five bullock carts transporting sand without a proper permit from the revenue department, the police were entrusted with the responsibility of ensuring shelter for the bullocks.
The police handed them over to a goshala (cow shelter) in Vellore.
Offender to pay costs
Sources said the cattle were handed over to the goshala for proper care and expenses for the same are to be borne by the offenders. Once they pay the fine amount and get a release order for their carts, the bullocks will be released. Necessary incidental expenses incurred at the goshala will also have to be paid by them, the sources said.
Police sources said that hundreds of vehicles are involved in transporting sand from different points on the Palar river basin in Vellore district. They get routed by the revenue department with a token system.
Sneak into the queue
“However, bullock carts sneak into the queue system by faking tokens and smuggle sand to black markets,” said a trader from Konavattam.
They either collude with those involved in the tokens process or make their way into the queue through intimidation, he said.
“In the past, authorities have seized several bullock carts on charges of illegal sand mining from the Palar banks. But most of the carts are released on payment of fine amount. They again get inducted into ferrying sand from the same quarry or another,” a sand dealer from Walajapet said.