The Supreme Court on Friday permitted mining firms to export their excavated iron ore from mines in the districts of Ballari, Chitradurga, and Tumakuru in Karnataka.
A bench comprising Chief Justice N V Ramana and Justices Krishna Murari and Hima Kohli took note of the stand of the Central government and lifted the curb on the export of iron ore and asked the firms to observe the conditions imposed by the authorities.
"We grant appellants permission to sell already excavated iron ore stock etc. in three Karnataka districts and permission granted to allocate iron ore by entering into direct contracts without resorting to e-auction. Permission granted to applicant to export iron ore produced in Karnataka to countries abroad but in terms of Government of India policies," it said.
Iron ore exports from Karnataka were banned in 2012 by the top court with an aim to prevent environmental degradation and to ensure that the mineral resources of the state are preserved for future generations as part of the concept of inter-generational equity.
The order was passed on pleas of mining firms seeking the lifting of curbs on the sale and export of iron ore imposed earlier on account of rampant violations.