Raipur, Sep 19 (IANS) Senior Congress leader and former chief minister Ajit Jogi Wednesday sought a high-level probe into an alleged illegal diamond mining scam in a forested area of Gariaband district in the state.
Jogi claimed that traders of others states such as Odisha, Gujarat, Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh were illegally mining diamond at Behradih and Pailikhand mines.
The two mines are located in the newly-formed Gariaband district, which is 92 km from here.
"A complete loot of natural resources is going on under the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) regime," Jogi said in a press statement here.
"Traders are taking out precious diamond illegally, while bauxites are being mined from Kawardha district and iron ore from Bastar region.
"The government must order a high-level probe into the matter," Jogi said.
He stated that if the "loot continues, no water, forest and natural resources will be left in the state".
According to official sources, the Madhya Pradesh government had awarded a prospecting licence for Pailikhand area to B. Vijaykumar Chhattisgarh Exploration Pvt Ltd (BVCE) in 2000 that confirmed diamond deposits there.
The state government had cancelled prospecting licence of BVCE in 2001 and deployed police security around the mine.
In 2009, the security cover was withdrawn after Maoists consolidated themselves in the area which is dominated by poverty-hit tribals.