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Govt committed to conserve Chure: DPM Poudel



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By A Staff Reporter
Kathmandu, June 10: Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Bishnu Prasad Poudel has said that the government will not do anything that puts the Chure region at risk.
Clarifying the issue of mine extraction mentioned in the recently unveiled budget for the upcoming fiscal year, he said that mining materials would be excavated only from the places identified by the Department of Mines and Geology based on Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA).
Speaking at a program organised by the Nepal Forum of Environment Journalists (NEFEJ), he said that no exploitation would be allowed in the Chure region and urged everyone not to politicise the matter by linking it with the Chure.
He added that the extraction of mines and minerals would be done in a very scientific manner in a scientifically suitable place without harming the environment or natural resources.
He also expressed his commitment of taking stern action against those found exploiting the country’s natural resources.
“The government is fully committed to protecting the Chure from the east to west, and the same is true for the protection of the Himalayas and the Mahabharata region,” he said.
Poudel informed that he was the person to reject digging and excavating hills in the Siddhababa area and that the construction process of a tunnel in the area was underway with the allocation of the budget
Speaking on the occasion, Member of the National Planning Commission Dr. Krishna Prasad Oli said that the government had spent more than Rs 1.5 billion every year for the conservation of the Chure in an effort to prevent desertification of the Terai region and that mining materials should be excavated scientifically.
President Chure Terai Madhes Conservation Committee Chairperson Dr. Kiran Poudyal clarified that the proposal to mine in the Chure area would be stopped right away.
Finance Secretary Shishir Kumar Dhungana said that exploration for mine can be done only in geographically and scientifically suitable places.
Ram Prasad Ghimire, Director General of the Department of Mines and Geology, said that the mines had been identified in such a way that they do not fall in the Chure area and were based on EIA.
Other speakers at the programme were Dr Tirtha Bahadur Shrestha, Dr. Binod Bhatta, Dr. Bijay Singh Danuwar, former finance secretary Rameshwor Khanal, geologist Megh Raj Dhital, NEFEJ chairperson Kosmos Biswokarma, among others.