The Meghalaya government has directed the Mining and Geology department to start the auctioning process of the 2 lakh metric tonnes of mined coal which is expected to begin in a few weeks time.

Speaking to mediapersons, Deputy Chief Minister Prestone Tynsong said that in a few weeks time the government will be able to start the auction process.

Tynsong said that the government will need to furnish all the necessary papers for the auctioning of coal before the NGT committee.

He said that the state government will go ahead with the open auctioning of the coal once the committee of the NGT approves the methodology and policy of the auction.

Earlier, the apex court while lifting the ban on coal mining had stated that entire extracted coal lying at various places in the hills districts of Meghalaya will be taken over by Coal India Ltd which would auction the same as per its normal method.

The Supreme Court earlier had allowed coal mining operations in Meghalaya, on the privately and community-owned land subject to the permissions from the concerned authorities and as per the Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) Act, 1957.

It may be mentioned that five years ago, on April 17, 2014, the National Green Tribunal had banned coal mining in the state after Assam-based All Dimasa Students’ Union and Dima Hasao District Committee filed a petition, stating the acidic discharge from unscientific coal mines of Meghalaya was polluting Kopili river downstream.