Tuesday, April 23, 2024

EJH groups alleges illegal transportation of coal, limestone


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By Our Reporter

Shillong, Feb 23: The Meghalaya Joint Action Committee (MJAC) on Friday petitioned Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma alleging that the cement companies that are operating in East Jaintia Hills are illegally transporting coal and limestone to cement plants.
The MJAC comprises the Association of Meghalaya Traders and Transporter (AMTT), Jaiñtia Hills Truck Owners Association (JHTOA) and All Jaiñtia Hills Cement and Clinker Association (AJHCCA).
MJAC general secretary, Enrico D Pasi told reporters that around 800 trucks carrying limestone and 130 trucks carrying coal are engaged in the illegal transportation of coal and limestone to avoid paying tax, and the absence of weighbridges and check gates at the entry points to the cement plants allows illegal activities to happen.
He observed that the prices of cement are cheaper in Assam as compared to Khliehriat despite the cement factories operating in the district.
Further, the MJAC secretary pointed out that the state government is losing huge revenue given the illegal transportation of coal by the cement factories.
Stating that the state exchequer is losing revenue in view of the NGT ban on the mining of coal, he said that the state could have collected revenue from the trucks entering these cement plants if they had a weighbridge or check gates.
At the same time, the MJAC urged upon the state government to come up with the mining policy which has been pending for more than a year. Reminding that the chief minister was felicitated in for assuring that the government will finalise the mining policy following the ban by the NGT on rat hole mining, MJAC finance secretary, Balen Thubru questioned Sangma for failing to fulfill his promise.


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