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Meghalaya: At least 13 workers feared dead in flooded illegal coal mine

In 2014, the National Green Tribunal (NGT) had banned rat-hole coal mining— a widely practised mining technique in Meghalaya.

Written by Abhishek Saha | Guwahati |
Updated: December 14, 2018 12:16:44 pm
Meghalaya: At least 13 workers feared dead in flooded illegal coal mine The incident was reported to the district authorities Thursday morning. (Source: Meghalaya Police)

A search operation is underway to rescue at least 13 workers trapped and feared dead due to flooding in an illegal coal mine in Meghalaya’s East Jaintia Hills district on Thursday. Water is being pumped out and efforts are on to identify the mine workers.

Meghalaya: At least 13 workers feared dead in flooded illegal coal mine This is not the first time that labourers engaged in illegal mining of coal have been trapped in a mine. (Source: Meghalaya Police)

The incident was reported to the district authorities Thursday morning. Superintendent of police, Sylvester Nongtynger, told The Indian Express, “NDRF and SDRF teams have started work. We have registered a case against the owner of the mine. It was a deep mine.” Although the senior officer did not comment on the probable condition of the men trapped, as per sources, the workers were feared dead since water has filled the mine.

Meghalaya: At least 13 workers feared dead in flooded illegal coal mine Water is being pumped out and efforts are on to identify the mine workers. (Source: Meghalaya Police)

In 2014, the National Green Tribunal (NGT) had banned rat-hole coal mining— a widely practised mining technique in Meghalaya.

In November, Agnes Kharshiing, an activist vocal against the counting of mining in Meghalaya despite the NGT order, and her colleague Amita Sangma were attacked while they were trying to locate an illegal mine.

Meghalaya: At least 13 workers feared dead in flooded illegal coal mine In 2014, the National Green Tribunal (NGT) had banned rat-hole coal mining. (Source: Meghalaya Police)

Meghalaya is said to have 640 million tonnes of coal reserve.

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