The dead were identified as Elad Bareh and Monoj Basumatry from Mooknor in Jalyiah village
Two miners were found dead on Sunday in Meghalaya’s East Jaintia Hills district, who police suspect were killed by falling boulders that hit them while they were trying to extract coal, even as the fate of 15 people trapped in a flooded mine since December 13 is unknown.
The dead were identified as Elad Bareh and Monoj Basumatry from Mooknor in Jalyiah village. The matter is under inquiry and efforts are on to find the owner of the quarry, police said.
Police have uncovered another four cases of illegal mining in the coal-rich East Jaintia Hills district, an area where a National Green Tribunal (NGT) ban on such activities has been in place for more than four years. Illegal mining has been rampant after the Supreme Court extended the date to transport coal that was already supposed to have been extracted prior to the NGT ban in 2014.
Meanwhile, the rescue operation for the 15 miners trapped in a flooded illegal coal mine in Ksan village of East Jaintia Hills district was affected on Sunday as the two high-powered pumps engaged in dewatering faced technical glitches.
Rescue officials at Ksan said that more than 12 lakh litres of water have been pumped out of the flooded mine, but even on Sunday the reduction in the level of water was only two feet after seven hours of running the pumps. This was due to seepage of river water from other parts of the mine.