A three-member committee of the National Green Tribunal (NGT) headed by Retd. Justice BP Kakoti expressed concern over the water of the streams and rivers that are turning acidic and also informed that there are altogether 24, 392 coal mines in Jaintia Hills.
Kakoti informed that NESAC is mapping the coal mines in East Jaintia Hills and that they would submit a report shortly. He also said that they have given those inputs relating to the identification of coal dumps and deposits.
Answering to the queries whether 24,392 coal mines are operational, Kakoti said that it has not been identified as of now whether people are operating in these coal mines and the number may include abandoned mines as well.
Talking about the streams and river water that turned acidic, Kakoti said that the ph level in the water in the Rivers and streams in East Jaintia Hills is around 3 which is not fit for human consumption. He also informed that the committee has identified the drainage and the rivers in East Jaintia Hills are mainly polluted due to the water from the existing coal mines flowing into the rivers.
Kakoti also stated that M/s Trinity Impex International who has also presented a presentation for treatment of acidic water due to coal mining has submitted a proposal for the pilot project costing around Rs. 17lakh.
He further informed that the next meeting will be held on July 22 and 23 at Shillong itself.