Expert panel allays fears of uranium mining hazards SHILLONG, Oct 30 A government-appointed expert panel has allayed fears of health hazard expressed by individuals and organizations in Meghalaya over the proposed uranium mining project in the State.
The residents of both the mining areas (in West Khasi Hills district) are enjoying good health. No unusual ailments and no congenital deformities were elicited in any of the villages, the experts said in their report to the government after surveying the people of the Domisiat area who were involved in the exploratory mining by Atomic Minerals Division in 1991.
The report, that was made public today, observed that fertility status of people was within normal limits and the children deaths in the area were attributed to common prevailing causes of child and infant mortality like diarrohea, fever and neo-natal deaths. Altogether 126 children deaths were recorded in the last 20 years.
The summary of the survey said the life span of people showed a healthy trend and there was no incident of chronic diseases afflicting the villages. There were a few cases of stomach cancer and cerebral palsy, but they are not linked to uranium mining, they said.
The blood sample reports of miners was also clean while the chromosomal study reports were also normal, the doctors panel said.
The experts also pointed out that there were a variety of fruits trees, all heavily laden with fruits and people as was normal in villages reared livestock.
The panel comprised of medical specialists and professors of the North Eastern Hill University.
The State Government had constituted two separate expert panels to study issues related to health aspects vis-a-vis the proposed uranium mining projects in Meghalaya. PTI
The Rs 1000 crore project has been stalled since the last one and half decade following protests from individuals and organizations who have apprehended severe health and environmental hazards arising out of the mining.
The State Government is likely to decide whether to give the nod to the UCIL to mine the uranium ore only after the two expert groups submit their report.
The UCIL has proposed to mine 375000 tonnes of ore in the West Khasi Hills district, the environmental clearence to which was given by the Centre in December last. PTI