Friday, June 14, 2024
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Crushers sans trade license: Council faces flak

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By Our Reporter

 SHILLONG: Khasi Hills Autonomous District Council (KHADC) Executive Committee (EC) has come under scanner for allowing limestone crushers owned by non-tribal owners to operate without the mandatory trading license from the Council in various parts of Ri-Bhoi district.

Mawlai MDC of the UDP, Embhah Syiemlieh during the Question Hour on the inaugural day of the Council’s Autumn Session on Tuesday said that the Council should not have allowed these limestone crushers to operate without procuring the trading licenses. In the light of the EC’s admission that it was yet to issue the trading license to limestone crushers since the firms were yet to submit documents related to the mining lease from the Union Ministry of Mining as well as environmental clearance from the Union Ministry of Environment and Forest, Syiemlieh termed it ‘most surprising’ that these limestone crushers in question were in operation. He said that the EC is authorised to seal and seize equipment of these firms owned by non-tribals if they do not have the trading licences under the provisions of the Section17 of Trading of the United Khasi Jaintia Hills District (Trading by Non-Tribals) Regulation, 1959, “I am surprised as to why the Council have not taken any step to stop operation of these limestone crushers and seized the same. The hesitation exhibited by the EC raises suspicion if it is trying to protect these eight non-tribal firms which are operating illegally in our State,” the MDC said. Criticising the EC, Jaiaw MDC of KHNAM Adelbert Nongrum wanted to know reasons for the EC’s inaction these private firms and alleged that there might be some hidden interests behind it. In reply, Executive Member in charge Trade, Antonio War dismissed the allegation that the Council was doing any favour to these non-tribal firms, but only allowing some time for them to submit required documents needed to procure trade license. “If they fail to submit the necessary documents, the EC would definitely take action against them,” War said.

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