Scanner on coal firm
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- Published 24.03.10
Ranchi, March 23: A coal mining company that supplies the precious mineral from Pakur to Punjab for production of electricity invited the wrath of both the Opposition and the treasury bench today for allegedly violating pollution and transport norms.
Legislators cutting across party lines created an uproar over the issue during Question Hour in the state Assembly after the matter was raised by JVM(P) MLA from Maheshpur Mistri Soren.
The matter concerns Panem Coal Mines Limited — a joint venture company floated by Punjab State Electricity Board and Eastern Minerals and Trading Agency — to exclusively produce, supply, transport and deliver coal from the mines of Pachwara central block in Amrapara of Pakur to the board’s thermal power stations.
“Transportation of coal from Pachwara to Pakur is being done in an unscientific manner. While coal dust is giving rise to serious, the speeding trucks mow down people and animals almost every day. I want the government to interfere immediately so that the company abides by pollution and transportation rules,” said Mistri.
Dumka MLA and chief minister Shibu Soren’s son Hemant also came in support of the Opposition members, alleging that Panem was flouting the rules right under the eye of the Pakur district administration officials.
JMM MLA from Littipara Simon Marandi said the coal-laden trucks were killing people everyday while the company has fixed a mere compensation of Rs 1 lakh.
This led deputy chief minister and forest and environment minister Sudesh Kumar Mahto, who had earlier defiantly maintained that Panem was not violating pollution norms, to declare that he would look into the matter.
According to sources, about 470 trucks ply daily from Amrapara to Pakur, ferrying coal from Pachwara block. The vehicles allegedly carry coal beyond its capacity limit, causing the government to lose royalty in crores.