Land owners of radioactive deposits want UCIL to mine Uranium ore

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Shillong, Sep 23 (UNI) The land owners of the uranium deposits in Meghalaya have agreed to lease their land to the Uranium Corporation of India Limited (UCIL) amid protests by the anti-Uranium mining groups.

''We have agreed to lease our land to the UCIL to ensure development in our undeveloped region. We want job security for our youth and environmental safeguard. The government must also ensure that there is no influx from the project, President of Synjuk Ki Nongshong Shnong of Langrin Warsan Lyngdoh, Roshem Marthong said today.

Mr Marthong, who met the Principal Adviser of Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) V P Raja earlier in the day, said the land owners had even asked the Meghalaya government to issue a No Objection Certificate to the UCIL to mine uranium in Kylleng-Pyndengsohiong areas.

Anti-mining groups like the Khasi Student's Union, Meghalaya People's Human Right Council and Langrin Youth Welfare Association, meanwhile, stuck to their earlier stand that the organisations would oppose uranium mining due to health hazards.

''We have reiterated our stand on the issue to Mr Raja and even suggested him to abandon the project in West Khasi Hills since it is not safe for health,'' KSU Chief Samuel Jyrwa said.

Moreover, the FKJGP also did not change its earlier stand stating it wanted an independent expert committee to study the pros and cons of uranium mining. ''We are not for or against the project at this point. All we want that neutral experts should study and give its verdict on the project, whether it is safe for the people of the state,'' Emlang Lyttan, FKJGP president added.

Mr Raja, who was here on a three-day visit, however, said the Centre would continue to have a dialogue with the people to dispel their apprehensions.

''We had an extremely fruitful dialogue with the government and civil society groups on the uranium mining and would continue to find out the root cause of people opposing the project,'' Mr Raja underlined.

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