Efforts on to retrieve dead miners in Meghalaya

Correspondent Shillong, Jan 27 | Publish Date: 1/27/2019 11:51:10 AM IST

Indian Navy divers on Sunday are continuing efforts to retrieve the body of a miner, which was detected on Saturday by an underwater remotely operated vehicle (UROV) inside a rat-holt coal mine at Ksan village in Meghalaya’s East Jaintia Hills, where 13 more remained trapped for 45 days now.

“The Navy Divers are trying to retrieve the second dead body detected inside the rat hole of the main shaft but due to many obstacles, which include exhaust pipes used by coal miners inside the rat-hole mine and turbidity of the water the retrieval has become very difficult,” Rescue Operations Spokesperson, Reginald Susngi said.

On Sunday, a 15-member Navy diver team from Visakhapatnam detected another body with the help of an UROV at an approximate depth of 160 and 280 feet inside a rat-hole coal mine, but through a complex maze of sub rat-hole mines.

“They (Navy) are making all efforts. Let us hope they will be able to pull out the body soon,” he said. 

The second body, which is yet to be identified, was detected in the same rat-hole coal mine where the UROV found the first body of a miner on January 16 -- 32 days after the miners got trapped inside the mine on December 13 as water gushed in.

On Friday, the body of a coal miner retrieved from the flooded coal mine, and on Thursday was identified as Amir Hussain of western Assam’s Chirang district.

Police handed over the body to his family on Saturday.

Coal mine accidents are rampant in the mountainous state for their unscientific “rat hole mining” habits even after a National Green Tribunal imposed an interim ban in April 2014.

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