State and Thane guardian minister Ganesh Naik has said that the quarries of Navi Mumbai, which are a serious environmental concern, should be shut down, though the owners must be compensated for this.
He has promised quarry owners Rs 2 crore each for shutting down their quarries.
According to Naik, “The quarries have become a major environmental and health hazard. They should be shut at the earliest to prevent further destruction in the region.”
Interestingly, Naik himself owned quarries earlier. “I realised the harm they were causing and hence I shut them down. It is high time everyone realises that the quarries are doing irreversible damage to the region and the future generations will not forgive us for not correcting the situation.”
Naik added that he wanted Navi Mumbai to be pollution-free and has suggested to CIDCO that a quarry zone be formed, and the quarries of the city be shifted there.
The minister added, “I do not have that kind of money, but I have friends who will help. Some quarry owners have already agreed and some others who are having problems with the government too might take the offer.”
Quarry worker dies
One more worker has been reported dead in a Navi Mumbai quarry, weeks after a quarry worker’s death on April 18.
Environmentalists are demanding closure of the quarries, with a social worker filing 5 intervention petitions in the High Court in the matter last Monday. Shanu Thakur, 24, who was employed at a quarry in the Turbhe MIDC area, was killed after he slipped while working.