Guwahati: Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal on Friday said no one should doubt the government’s intention to protect nature even as protests continued over preliminary permission given for coal mining inside Dehing Patkai forest.
After visiting some quarantine centres in Dibrugarh, Sonowal told reporters that he has already directed Forest Minister Parimal Suklabaidya to visit the Dehing Patkai Wildlife Sanctuary, known as the Amazon of East, and submit a ground report.
“We are committed to protect Assam’s environment and biodiversity. No one should cast aspersions on state government’s sincerity to preserve the natural beauty, greenery and natural resources of the state,” the chief minister said.
Suklabaidya has been directed to visit the sanctuary to take stock of the actual situation and the state government will take further steps in this regard based on the Forest minister’s report, he added.
On Friday, opposition Congress had tweeted against the Centre’s decision to give stage-I permission to Coal India Ltd for coal mining inside the forest with the hashtag ‘SaveDehingPatkai’.
In a series of tweets, the Assam Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) alleged that since the BJP government came to power in Assam in 2016, illegal coal mining increased many- fold and is patronised by the ruling politicians.
All Assam Students’ Union, Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti, environmentalists, activists, teachers and students are protesting on social media with the hashtag ‘Save Amazon Of East from Coal Mafias’ and ‘I am Dehing Patkai’ and warned of strong protests if coal mining is allowed. (PTI)
Source: The Shillong Times