FROM OUR STAFF CORRESPONDENT
SHILLONG, Aug 1: The official ‘tough directive’ to stop all earth cutting along the Meghalaya stretches of the tiol Highway 40 situated between Byrnihat and Khapara has brought a relieve to the residents and the commuters of this crucial stretch from the unwanted floods.
While there has been a certain amount of deluge in certain portions due the incessant rains that hit the state in the past two days, there has been no serious case of inundation, reported the local residents on Saturday. The residents had a horrific time when the first bout of monsoon lashed the area this year.
The recent amount of floods is attributed to wanton earth cutting along the Meghalaya stretch of the border. Deputy Commissioner of Ri- Bhoi district Pooja Pandey admitted that earth cutting by private parties compounded by idequate draige is the cause of floods in the areas.
However, taking cognizance of the seriousness of earth cutting by private parties, she officially banned earth cutting along her area of domain. “I have ensured that such type of activities is stop and we are enforcing with stringent warnings to any violators”, Pandey told The Sentinel, even as she asserted that any arguments by the private parties on the basis of traditiol land tenure system will not be entertain.
“A ban is a ban and we will enforce it”, Pandey stated while adding that the magistrates and the police have been strictly asked to enforce the ban. Section 144 Crpc has also been promulgated in the areas operated by the purported local land sharks.
Informing that there is no time frame to ease the ban on earth cutting, the Deputy Commissioner said, “The joint inspection carried with the tiol Highway Authority of India (NHAI) clearly pointed out at the unscientific earth moving as one of the sole reason for the floods in the stretches that is part of the four lane road connecting Shillong and Guwahati”.