Navy, army leave Meghalaya mining search

Navy, army leave Meghalaya mining search

Photo: Second body pulled out of the flooded mine handed over to the victim's family on Friday. Photo credit: East Jaintia Hills district administration, Meghalaya

A team of navy divers and army personnel, which were rushed to carry out a search for 15 miners trapped in a flooded coal mine in Meghalaya left the site on Friday citing an instruction from their higher-ups.

The miners got trapped in the 300 feet rat-hole mine in East Jaintia Hills district, in which they entered on December 13 to extract coal. 

The navy divers have managed to pull out only two bodies while their remote operated vehicles detected two more bodies in the flooded mine. The second decomposed body was handed over to the victim's family on Friday.

The Navy team was rushed to the site from Vishakhapatnam-based eastern naval command on December 28 after the NDRF personnel could not trace the trapped miners.

"The navy team left the operation site today and will be going back tomorrow on the instruction they received from their high command. The district authority salutes the efforts, dedication and their tremendous contribution in the two months rescue operation for the trapped miners," official spokesperson S. Susngi said in a statement. 

The army team, which was camping at the site to assist the agencies engaged in the search also left the site on Friday.

Meanwhile, the pumping out of water from the flooded mine by Coal India Limited, Kirloskar Brothers and KSB personnel continues. The NDRF and SDFR personnel are still at the site, Susngi said.