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‘Radiation level in uranium-rich area of Meghalaya within safety level’

Replying to a Short Duration discussion on the issue tabled by Congress legislator, Dr, Mazel Ampareen Lyngdoh, the Chief Minister, however, informed that a report of the six member expert committee from North Eastern Hill University (NEHU) found that the radiation level at ‘Phud Syngkai’ stream is higher than at the source.

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Shillong: The Atomic Minerals Directorate (AMD) for exploration and Research North Eastern Region, has found that the radiation level in uranium-rich area around Nongbah Jynrin village including the sites of repository tanks and mining pits is comparable with reported values on Indian and global background radiation level in Meghalaya, Chief Minister Conrad Sangma informed the Assembly on Friday.

Replying to a Short Duration discussion on the issue tabled by Congress legislator, Dr, Mazel Ampareen Lyngdoh, the Chief Minister, however, informed that a report of the six member expert committee from North Eastern Hill University (NEHU) found that the radiation level at ‘Phud Syngkai’ stream is higher than at the source.

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Following the report of expert committee NEHU, Sangma said the government decided to undertake a separate study on the rocks and sediments of the ‘Phud Syngkai’ stream at a credible laboratory to determine the exact cause of the radiation, besides the State Mining and Geology department was also entrusted to take up the study of rocks and sediments.

“The chemical analysis of rock and sediments samples is being undertaken at the laboratory in the Directorate of Mineral Resources to determine the contents of these rocks and sediments. The report on this study will be submitted shortly,” Sangma informed.

The Chief Minister also informed the House that the State Government has also requested IIT-Guwahati to assist in the form of a third party investigation on the radiation levels. Formal confirmation is still awaited from IIT-Guwahati, he said.

The Meghalaya government had requested various government agencies to study the level of radiation in the uranium-rich areas of South West Khasi Hills district following reports of an explosion at a repository tank at Nongbah-Jynrin, Wahkaji.

However, AMD officials and the expert committee found that the radiation level at the source of repository tanks and pits were “within safety level” and there was no leakage of radiation and explosion of the repository tanks.

Meanwhile, Lyngdoh asked the government why there was need to have a separate study on the high radiation level in the Phud Syngkai, rivulet in South West Khasi Hills district.

“Is it true radiation scares are true,” Lyngdoh asked, even as she urged the government to make the finding of the expert committee, NEHU public.

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