Assembly Committee on Environment expresses concern over draft Environmental Impact Assessment, 2020

Shillong, Jul 31: The Meghalaya Assembly Committee on Environment, on Friday, expressed their concern over the draft Environmental Impact Assessment, 2020, which reduces the period of public consultation from 45 to 20 days.

The members also stated that it was a contentious issue and added that the committee agreed that the government should take a stand and give suggestions to the centre.

Committee member and Congress MLA Hima Shangpliang stated that the committee is of the view that Sixth Schedule Areas should be given considerable avenues in the draft.

Meanwhile, the members suggested that minor mineral should be given a considerate view in the draft since rural people of the state are involved in sand mining and other minor minerals.

On the issue of felling of trees in Sangmein area in Upper Shillong to widen the road towards Shillong Peak, the committee stated that the PWD did not seek the permission of the Forest department before felling the 12 trees.

Umroi legislator and committee member, George Lyngdoh suggested that the government should come up with a policy so that such forests should be protected.

“If there is a policy, schemes can be drawn up to protect the forests and catchment areas,” Lyngdoh suggested.

The Assembly committee also expressed their concern over the haphazard disposal of hospital waste especially the equipment used during the COVID-19 situation.

The committee was informed that such equipment were disposed at the electric crematorium in Jhalupara.

The government informed the committee that three incinerators will be installed in Shillong, Tura and Jowai.

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