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Uranium may enrich job market, if Naidu trashes people?s health

Though the Uranium Corporation was refused mining rights in various parts of India, Andhra Pradesh may still say yes to it.

india Updated: Mar 02, 2004 17:58 IST

Though the Uranium Corporation of India Limited (UCIL) was refused mining rights in various parts of India, Andhra Pradesh may still say yes to it.

UCIL has applied for a licence to mine uranium at Lambapur and Peddagattu in Nalgonda where its atomic division found 11.02 million ton of deposits in early 2003. It estimates that the region can give 1,250 ton of ore a day for more than 20 to 25 years.

Besides the licence, the company has also asked for a permit to set up a hydro-metallurgical plant for processing the uranium ore. (UCIL plans to invest Rs 450 crore (US$ 96 million) for setting up the plant.)

Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu is now trying to decide whether the jobs that the project will guarantee mean more to his government than the health of his people and clean environment in which they live.

The fallouts of uranium mining are well-documented. Thousands of people have died in four decades of uranium mining in the country of causes ranging from radiation to lack of adherence to basic safety standards considered mandatory to uranium mining.

An independent study done near the Jadugoda mine in Bihar (now in Jharkhand) had concluded that the radiation levels were 58 times more than the allowed international standard.

First Published: Mar 02, 2004 14:40 IST