National green tribunal
steps over vague policies
Sumar Sing Sawian
The state government is now in a quandary, as how to wriggle out, over the total ban of haphazard and wanton mining of coal in the state, which was imposed by the National Green Tribunal since April 17 in the year 2014. Because of the indifferent and callous attitude of the government, which had allowed for so long the primitive method of coal mining, the government has to now to bite the dust. Since the inception of Meghalaya, forty years ago, the state is now facing an annual revenue loss of rupees six hundred crores. The government had allowed the coal barons to rule the roost, at the cost of environmental degradation, which can never be recuperated overnight.
The financial wizards of the state, are now in a fix and have to possibly satisfy themselves in a shoe-string budget. It is indeed a lesson to be learnt in a hard way by the government, in taking for granted of the coal resource and also other minerals such as limestone, which cannot be taken for a ride. In fact the state government had prepared a policy on mining of minerals since the year 2012, but strangely enough, this policy had been kept in cold storage, less it offend the coal barons, who have been given a free hand in the exploitation of the miners, without any reserves.