Meghalaya Chief Minister DD Lapang today said the state government would be firm in maintaining the order if any organisation tried to take law in its hands over the controversial uranium mining issue.
In face of a 15-day deadline given by the powerful Khasi Students Union (KSU) seeking withdrawal of the cabinet decision to lease land to the Uranium Corporation of India Limited (UCIL), Lapang told reporters here that law and order would be maintained at "all costs".
"The administration and the law enforcing agencies would be firm in dealing with any situation," he said.
Amid threats of large-scale agitation by anti-mining organisations led by the KSU, Lapang ruled out any review of the cabinet decision to lease land to the UCIL for pre-project developmental works in the uranium-rich areas of the state.
The chief minister, however, said he was ready to discuss the issue with KSU but added the initiative for this should come from the other side.
The Meghalaya cabinet had decided to lease 422 sq ha of land having uranium deposits in West Khasi Hills for 30 years to UCIL for pre-project developmental works. The UCIL had agreed to earmark Rs 209 crore to carry out pre-project development programmes, including health care facilities, power, water, roads and educational needs.