The Central Government has been directed by the Supreme Court to come to a final decision on the ban on coal mining activities in Meghalaya. A three judge bench in its order, passed on Tuesday, had given the Centre a one month period to arrive at this final decision. ‘It appears that final decision has not been taken (on this matter) so far,’ the bench said.
The attention of the Court was also drawn to the August 10, 2015 letter of the Ministry of Coal where it had conveyed to the Ministry of Home Affairs its decision to exempt Meghalaya from the application of the Mines and Minerals Act, 1957 and Coal Mines Act, 1973.
During the hearing, Additional Solicitor General informed that some information was called for from Meghalaya. Meanwhile, the bench has also directed the Meghalaya Government to file an affidavit within four weeks with regards to the various interlocutory applications filed for transportation of coal already mined.
Naphade, counsel representing Meghalaya government, stated that the State Government has constituted a committee in this regard, for the entire State, to study various aspects of this matter. He said the government would be in a position to file the response after receiving the report from the said committee