Residents of Tipong township in Assam’s Margherita sub-division find themselves ensnared in an environmental and health crisis, as the continuous passage of vehicles transporting allegedly illegally mined coal wreaks havoc on their daily lives. The shuttered Tipong Colliery, once a source of livelihood for many, has now become a conduit for noise and dust pollution, leaving locals grappling with the detrimental effects.
Residents contend that approximately a thousand vehicles, primarily 4×4 max pick-up trucks, laden with illegal coal, traverse the township roads ceaselessly, creating a cacophony of noise and leaving behind a thick veil of dust. The situation has escalated to the point where these vehicles ply the roads around the clock, disrupting the peace and tranquility of the once serene township.
The constant movement of these vehicles, often at high speeds, not only hampers the daily commute for locals but also poses significant health risks. The airborne dust, laden with particles from the alleged illegal coal mining, poses respiratory threats to residents. The noise pollution compounds the issue, affecting the overall well-being of the community, with children, in particular, facing challenges on their way to school.
About Coal Transport:
Residents have leveled accusations against the Lalpahar Village Development Council, alleging that they charge a fee of Rs 300 from each 4×4 max pick-up truck, effectively facilitating the movement of these vehicles. This purported involvement raises questions about the council’s commitment to genuine development and raises concerns about the potential collusion between local authorities and those engaging in illegal coal transportation.
Frustrated and alarmed by the deteriorating conditions, locals have approached the Lalpahar Village Development Council, urging them to cease the practice of allowing the passage of these vehicles. Residents argue that the council, designated as a development committee, should focus on initiatives that benefit the community rather than aiding and abetting activities that degrade their quality of life.
The plea from Tipong township residents underscores the urgent need for intervention to curb the unchecked transport of illegally mined coal. The persisting environmental and health hazards demand the attention of relevant authorities to ensure the well-being of the local populace. As the community contends with the aftermath of the Tipong Colliery’s closure, the illegal coal transportation issue lingers, posing a threat to both the environment and the health of those who call Tipong home. Immediate and decisive action is imperative to bring relief to the beleaguered residents and restore the township to a semblance of normalcy.