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‘Dead or Alive, they should be taken out’: SC tells govt on trapped Meghalaya miners

The Supreme Court on Thursday expressed its dissatisfaction with the rescue efforts to trace the 15 Meghalaya miners who have been trapped for 22 days. “We pray to God that all are alive,” the top court said on a petition that wanted the government to be ordered to scale up the rescue efforts in a flooded illegal mine in Meghalaya’s East Jaintia Hills.

For people trapped in the Meghalaya mine, the judges said, “every minute counts” and they should be brought out. “No matter whether they are all dead, not dead or all alive, they should be taken out,” the court said. The judges also asked why the government hadn’t ordered the army to join the rescue operation which, for days, was stuck in bureaucratic red tape.

The court also asked the petition to call the centre’s law officer so that the court could issue some interim directions to step up the operation. The Meghalaya government had earlier told the court that the state was taking steps and deployed personnel from the National Disaster Relief Force, Navy and Coal India since Dec 14.

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