Meghalaya Mine Tragedy: Over 2 months, rescue operations make no headway

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SHILLONG, Feb 18: Disappointment is what the state government is faced with as far the rescue operations at the illegal coal mine at Ksan in East Jaintia Hills is concerned with the rescue operations heading nowhere despite months of effort and financial implications amounting around 2-3 crores rupees approximately.

“The cost for the rescue operation is rising day by day and as per rough estimate it is amounting to two to three crores,” said state minister incharge of Disaster Management, Kyrmen Shylla on Monday.

Giving the current status of the ongoing operations, Shylla said, “All in all the water level continues to be the same with occasional decrease in the level which rises back up within few hours of pumping.”

He informed that the Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) is also not helping much in locating the bodies due to turbidity, space constraints for the ROV to operate freely and the nature of the rat hole mines.

He also informed that he is yet to have a meeting with the experts to understand the ground situation and decide on it.

He however said that they are awaiting the directions of the Supreme Court on the matter.

It may be recalled that it was on Dec 13 last when 15 miners were trapped inside a rat holes mine at Ksan in East Jaintia Hills. It is two months and counting and only a body has been recovered while the fate of others is still unknown. Multiple rescue agencies were put into service and the outcome is still far from near.