Shillong: The rescue operations carried out by the 100 odd NDRF, SDRF, State Police and civil defence at Ksan coal mine, Lumthari, East Jaintia Hills has failed to produce any desired results for the fifth day on Monday. Besides, the miners' perception within the periphery (as earlier reported by The Sentinel) that there could be more than the reported thirteen miners who were trapped and feared dead inside the mine turned out to be true.
One person identified as Abdul Kalam SK of of Magurmari village of West Garo Hills and employed in the same mine has been officially reported missing thus raising the number of miner feared dead to 14. An official source who is liasoning with the NDRF team on the progress of the rescue operations told The Sentinel that the team has brought high-level water pumps on Monday to generate the water out of the pits before the divers and other aids could swing in for tomorrow’s action.
Going by the interaction with those who have literally known the rat hole coal mines in Khasi Jaintia Hills, that glimmer of hope has subsided. “ They could have escaped from the gushing waters that breach from any other mine, reached the other tunnels but starvation compounded with the toxic gas underneath should be a concern in terms of survival,” stated an expert observer on condition of anonymity.
However, the Superintendent of Police (East Jaintia Hills) Sylvester Nongtnger said over phone, “ we are not losing hope because we have a positive mindset”, adding, “the joint rescue team are making all out efforts till the last report came in to me”
The Magistrate assigned to carry out the magisterial inquiry, Banshan Kharshandi said that he has started his spadework with a hope that he will complete the inquiry within the stipulated 15 days time. Going by inputs received from the place of occurrence, divine intervention could be the last straw after considering on how dangerous these unscientific deep pits are. Mentionably, 13 miners were initially reported to have trapped in the rat hole coal mine on Thursday.
Also read: Meghalaya News