Shillong, Apr 29: The beautiful Khasi, Garo and Jaintia Hills of two decades ago, the greenery and clean water, have all gone.
Worse still is the greed of the â€˜private coal minersâ€™ and their agents who are behind child trafficking, slave labour and exploitation of the poor labourers of Nepal.
This masterpiece of a photo-essay by photo-journalist Brent Levin, say it all!
This is a glimpse of â€˜real lifeâ€™ in India, which our â€˜glamour huntingâ€™ print journalists ignore, and as for Indian TV, its news is all about chasing people for â€˜bytesâ€™ and manufacturing controversies.
The real tragedy is that all these mines are owned by indigenous tribal people.
If this was not enough, human greed has destroyed one of the finest places in India. Irresponsible coal mining and uranium mining is fast turning the â€˜Abode of the cloudsâ€™ into â€˜the abode of
black pits and poisonous poolsâ€™.
Thousands of fish have died at Ranikorâ€¦ obviously poisoned. Will this spot also be consigned to the annals of history made by mad-men?
Indian Anglers have regarded Kynshi as one of the last wild fishing spots in the state!
It is one of the last wild fishing spots left in the state of Meghalaya. Driving to Ranikor will also take one through the wettest land on earth- Mawsynram!
In the past few years, this place has become famous amongst the local anglers for fish spieces like- Golden mahseer, Chocolate mahseer, Goonch (Catfish), eels etc. Fishing area on the river Kynshi at Ranikor is approximately 15 to 16 kilometers. The river originates from a small town called Rilang.
This river also offers great birding experience. It is not difficult to see Brahmini kites (considered to be rare by expert birders) gliding in for a catch. Some of the other bird species found are kingfishers, lapwings and sunbirds.
Ranikor is an isolated place and very few people have tried their luck at angling here. A regular catch of Golden Mahseer can be around 20-30 lbs. One can also see tribal anglers using modern as well as traditional means of angling/fishing. There is also a very active tribal conservation program, which was started by some local tribal boys, due to which thereâ€™s a very healthy growth in the fish population.
The indigenous tribes have traditionally held great respect for Mother Earth. But now, naked greed has taken over.Â Traditional value systems have been flushed down the drain.
Truly, in another ten years, Meghalaya will no longer be â€˜the land of the cloudsâ€™ but a stinking rat hole with contamination and filth all around.