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Congress MP claims 80 have died in Assam’s rathole mines

Pradyut Bordoloi.

Pradyut Bordoloi.  

An Assam Congress MP has said rathole coal mines in the State’s rainforests have killed some 80 miners in the past three years.

Pradyut Bordoloi, sitting in the Lok Sabha for Nowgong, accused the Tinsukia district administration of aiding and abetting a “coal mafia,” which has dug up some 5,000 rathole mines, destroying the pristine jungles along the Assam-Arunachal Pradesh border.

His allegations followed the Gauhati High Court’s directive to the district administrations to file affidavits on illegal coal mining and trading by July 31.

“These mines often cave in during the rainy season, trapping and killing miners. In the last three years, 80 miners and two baby elephants have died in these mines,” Mr. Bordoloi said.

The three years correspond to the rule of Sarbananda Sonowal’s BJP-led coalition government.

Mr. Bordoloi, said the nexus between the coal mafia and the administration kept the death of miners under wraps.

The coalfields of Ledo, bordering Changlang district of Arunachal Pradesh, are located in Margherita.

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Printable version | Feb 19, 2020 2:40:13 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/congress-mp-claims-80-have-died-in-assams-rathole-mines/article28230020.ece

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