Express News Service reported that granting of mining licences for three coal blocks in Meghalaya but the decision has activists in the state fuming. They are wondering how the Coal Ministry could grant the mining licenses when a ban on rat-hole coal mining, enforced by the National Green Tribunal in 2014, is still in force. Ms Agnes Kharshiing, who has for long been fighting against illegal coal mining, said the coal, extracted ahead of the NGT ban, has already exhausted after being transported legally and illegally. She said “If indeed mining is going to resume, it will be for political gains. It is cheating the illiterate and helping the mafia. There is no feasible blueprint for feasible coal mining in Meghalaya. It will only be rat-hole mining. This is illegal and promote illegal trades in the coal belt,”The state's Chief Secretary MS Rao did not reply when asked if the mining licenses contravened the NGT ban. While seeking permission for the resumption of coal mining, the state government had written to the Centre that it would ensure scientific mining. But the activists pointed out that Meghalaya is known for the dangerous rat-hole coal mining.