SHILLONG: The Khasi Students’ Union (KSU) has asked the Centre to immediately issue a notification declaring that it has stopped mining of radioactive substances like uranium from the State.
“If the Central government is waiting on an opportunity to mine uranium from Khasi hills, then it means that it is giving step-motherly treatment to the indigenous people of the State and will be mining it forcefully. If the Centre does so it means that it is treating the State as its colony and not as part of India,” KSU president Lambok Starwell Marngar said.
This after last week, the Uranium Corporation of India Limited (UCIL) has said it has been “compelled” to shut down its offices in Meghalaya and terminated the services of all contract workers employed in two of its offices.
The company has around 10 contract workers in Meghalaya, six at its office in Shillong and four at uranium-rich Wahkaji village. According to the KSU, mining of uranium all over the world has been disastrous and the mines have been sources of many diseases and illnesses and its effect continues for generations. The student’s body also said that this radioactive substance has been mined all over the world only in places where the indigenous people lives.
The KSU pointed out in USA uranium has been mined from the Navajo Nation where the Native Americans live and also in Australia this substances has been mined from where the Aboriginals call their home. “In India too uranium has been mined where the Adivasis live like in Jharkhand and Andhra Pradesh,” the KSU said. Marngar said that the KSU has been opposing uranium mining in the state since 1993 and it is still doing so.