Meghalaya issues modified coal transportation order



The Meghalaya government has issued a modified order allowing transportation of coal in transit through the state, before a Supreme Court hearing on the issue, an official said on Saturday.

The order issued by Tining Dkhar, Commissioner and Secretary of Mining and Geology, allows transportation of coal that "originates outside the state of Meghalaya and being transported through the state for consumption by factories, general households or export".

"We have allowed transportation of coal loaded from the sites and in transit before the order of the Supreme Court," Dkhar told IANS.

The apex court on Tuesday banned the transportation of coal in Meghalaya till the next hearing fixed on February 19 for its failure to curb illegal mining in the state.

Thirty-three tranded Bhutanese coal-laden trucks at the Dawki Integrated Check Post (ICP) in the West Jaintia Hills district, were also allowed to transit to Bangladesh on Saturday.

"For the time being, we have permitted the transit of foreign origin coal to Bangladesh through the Dawki ICP following the amended notification of the Meghalaya government," a Customs official told IANS.

Meghalaya International Exporters' Chamber of Commerce, Secretary, Dolly Khonglah said that all the trucks have transited to Bangladesh's Tamabil for unloading of the consignments on Saturday.

Bhutan is exporting coal to Bangladesh via India as per the South Asian Preferential Trade Arrangement.

India has named the Dawki-Tamabil and Dalu-Nakugaon land customs stations as dedicated ports for Bangladesh-Bhutan trans-shipment export-import trade.

The ban on transportation of coal was of significance in the wake of a coal mine tragedy in the state on December 13, in which 15 miners were trapped inside an illegal 370-feet deep flooded mine in Ksan village in East Jainta Hills district. - IANS