SHILLONG, Jan 4 � Meghalaya�s mining policy is in its final stage of approval and is now awaiting just the nod from Chief Minister Mukul Sangma.
Deputy Chief Minister in-charge Mining, Bindo M Lanong said that the draft policy has been modified after objections were raised by stakeholders. Some of the stakeholders, which largely include small coal miners, objected entry of foreign direct investment in the mining sector.
They were of the view that entry of such big players in the unorganised coal mining sector would wipe away the small miners and put their livelihood at stake.
The government on the other hand wants big companies to enter into the mining sector so that minerals could be scientifically mined, something which is not happening in the present scenario.
�The views of the stakeholders have been taken into consideration. Now it is in the Chief Minister�s Secretariat awaiting final approval,� Lanong said.
Lanong said he was unsure if the policy would be discussed in the next Cabinet meeting, which is due. Neither could he give an assurance whether the policy would be taken up in the Budget session of the Assembly.
�Everything has been finalised, so it is a matter of time that the policy would be adopted in the State, but we cannot give a timeframe at this juncture,� he added.
The policy was drafted years back, but it is being debated before getting final approval of the government. Several meetings have been held between the government, stakeholders and NGOs.
�We are moving in the right direction and it is a matter of time the policy would be adopted in the State,� the Deputy Chief Minister assured.