Burglars break into Tipong colliery in broad day light, steal valuables worth several crores
MARGHERITA, Aug 7: Controversy has become a part of the coal mining sites located at the Tinsukia district’s Margherita along the Assam-Arunachal Pradesh border.
Illegal mining, trading and engagement of child labourers has been a routine dispute concerning these mining sites owned by the North East Coal (NEC) Field of the Coal India Limited.
What is a fresh addition to the controversy is that a group of local burglars had recently barged into the NEC’s Tipong colliery and looted the public sector enterprise’s valuable tools and machineries worth rupees several crores.
According to the local residents settled in and around the Tipong colliery, the miscreants used sophisticated cutter machines to scrap the properties, loaded in a number of max pick-up vans and deserted the place in broad daylight.
The residents told The Hills Times that the miscreants loaded various iron tools, aluminium, precious metals and other machinery items and transported it to some unknown destinations. “It all went right in front of the Coal India Limited’s security men. The stealing went on for about a week. The security personnel simply remained blind folded,” the local residents added.
Notably, Coal India Limited stopped its mining in all the six collieries located in and around Margherita in 2020 due to certain issues related to environmental degradation. However, it resumed mining works at Tikak Colliery though five other collieries – Tirap, Tipong, Ledo, Bargolai and Namdang, are yet to get green signal from the Union Ministry for resumption.
Under this given situation, these five mining sites have partially been abandoned ever since 2020. As such, certain miscreants have targeted these dysfunctional collieries for running off with the valuable metals and other public properties.
Notably, a team of the Purvattar Khaadan Mazdoor Sangha, affiliated to Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh, on Sunday visited the Tipong Colliery and expressed concern over the lapses on the part of the Coal India Limited for its failure in safeguarding the valuable properties. Sangh’s president Bharat Bhushan Borthakur said, “It is unfortunate to learn that the Coal India Limited’s properties are not in good safe and conditions.”
Sangh president Borthakur further said that it will press the Coal India Limited authority to set up an inquiry committee to unearth the truth behind the illegal disposal of the properties of the Tipong colliery.
“When a mining site is closed, it should be abandoned only after it is fully developed and secured. And that is the basic guideline set by the Central government which the authority must acknowledge. The mining machinery of the NEC deserted in and around the Tipong colliery can turn heritage tools in the days to come,” Borthakur added.