No leakage of toxic waste from Uranium tanks at Nongbah Jynrin, says Meghalaya CM Conrad Sangma
By Ladiangti Rani | SHILLONG:
There is no leakage of toxic waste from the Uranium storage tanks at Nongbah Jynrin in South West Khasi Hills (SWKH), said Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma.
The statement was in response to a short duration discussion initiated by East Shillong MLA M Ampareen Lyngdoh on the sixth day of the ongoing budget session on Friday.
Sangma said that there was no “explosion” as per the report by the North-Eastern Hill University (NEHU).
“There are two small holes which appeared to have been made intentionally, but no leakage,” Sangma said.
The Chief Minister stated that soon after news of the leakage circulated last year, the Superintendent of Police (SP) of SWKH immediately sent personnel to investigate the site.
“They reported that no such incident had occurred. The team found holes on two slabs covering the tanks, which were intentionally man-made,” he said.
Towards the end of 2020, the State Government had requested the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Guwahati to conduct a joint study concerning the issue.
“A six-member committee under the chairmanship of Prof. B Myrboh, Department of Chemistry, NEHU, held an interactive session on the report on December 17. It was revealed that the radiation level at the source (Uranium storage tanks and pits) is well within safety levels,” Sangma said.
“However, the committee found that radiation levels were higher 100 feet away from the source. Regular police patrolling is being done in that area. Health and safety of the people of the state are of utmost importance,” he added.
Earlier, East Shillong MLA M Ampareen Lyngdoh asked the State Government to make the inquiry report submitted by NEHU public.
“Are these radiation scares true? Can the Government of Meghalaya ensure there is no threat of radiation?” Lyngdoh questioned.
Last year, the Khasi Students’ Union (KSU) had expressed its dissatisfaction over the two agencies selected by the State Government to carry out the research.
“The Government mentioned IIT-Guwahati and NEHU, but they are not independent agencies. We need the government to give space for an independent agency so that they can come up with an independent report. We are not satisfied,” KSU president Lambokstar Marngar had stated.
The SWKH District Administration had also launched an inquiry into the matter and reported no leakage.
(Edited by Andre Kongri)