Monday, 30th October 2017

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AASU protests over coal mining

Coal India had been permitted last month to carry out mineral extraction from the Dehing Patkai wildlife sanctuary

By Pradip Kumar Neog in Duliajan
  • Published 22.05.20, 4:15 AM
  • Updated 22.05.20, 4:15 AM
  • a min read
  •  
AASU members stage the protest at Dehing Patkai wildlife sanctuary. Picture by Pradip Kumar Neog

The activists of the Duliajan unit of the All Assam Students’ Union (AASU) staged a protest on Thursday at Dehing Patkai wildlife sanctuary under Digboi forest range in Tinsukia district, demanding withdrawal of the decision for coal mining in the elephant forest reserve immediately by the National Board of Wildlife (NBWL).

The NBWL last month permitted Coal India Ltd to carry out coal extraction from the sanctuary, triggering opposition by AASU besides various organisations and individuals.

The protesters holding banners and placards shouted slogans against the BJP-led Narendra Modi government and the state government under Sarbananda Sonowal.

They demanded a stop to coal mining in the elephant forest reserve.

The banners read: “Save Dehing Pataki, stop coal mining”, “withdraw the decision for coal mining in the sanctuary”, “Lend your hand at least, save the Amazon of the east”, “It is time to save Dehing Pataki before the global temperature soars high”.

AASU’s Duliajan unit president Bubul Talukdar, who took part in the protest, said extraction of coal in the sanctuary would pose a threat to the rich biodiversity of the state.

They demanded a stop to mining.

AASU’s Duliajan unit general secretary Dipankar Gogoi said: “The NBWL should withdraw its decision for permission of coal mining in the sanctuary to Coal India Ltd immediately.”

He said the sanctuary is one of the richest biodiversity sanctuaries in the world.