The copper and slate mines of myagdi did not come into operation
Dolakha. Locals are getting frustrated as slate, copper and limestone mines, which have been lying derelict for years in the forests of myagdi, have not been prepared for operation yet. Mines in more than a dozen places in western and northern myagdi are deserted. Mines of copper, slate, silajit, khari and limestone have not been excavated. Also, they are being buried due to lack of protection.
The concerned bodies have not shown any interest in conducting a feasibility study of the mine. But traditional excavations are being carried out from slate mines in Rum and Lulang. Bhagwati’s Kharidhunga mine has been closed for years. Similarly, Okharbot copper mine has been closed for half a decade. According to the locals, the copper mine here has been in operation for over a hundred years.
The excavation work was stopped after the then government failed to pay the tax (sent) for excavation. Nar Bahadur Chhantyal of Raghuganga Gaonpalika 6 Thadakhani said that the copper mine was closed after the Rana Prime Minister Chandra Shamsher had to pay more tax than the income earned from mining. “The mines that were closed during the Rana period could not be brought into operation even after more than a decade of the establishment of the republic,” said Chhantyal. There are about 20 copper mines in the district including Gurja, Takam, Kuinemangale, Okharbot, Malkwang and Bhakimli.The Chhantyal community was given the responsibility for the excavation. According to the census of 2068 BS, the population of Chhantyal caste is 11 thousand. Displaced from traditional occupations, they have recently joined foreign employment and other occupations. The mines are now being filled. Mining tunnels are still found here.
Scraps of discarded metal are found scattered after processing. At that time, it was customary to excavate mines using china, gal, ghan, kuto and kodalo. Rajesh Shakya, an industrialist and tourism entrepreneur from Myagdi, said that the government should take steps to excavate the mine. He said that there would be no problem of investment for mining if the policy is comfortable and infrastructure is developed.Chairman of malika Village Municipality, shriprasad roka, said that the cumbersome policy of the state and the indifference of the concerned bodies were the obstacles for the operation of the mine. “We have repeatedly asked the federal government for permission to operate the mine, but no hearing has been held,” roka said.
Despite the efforts of the head of the local government of Myagdi to get permission to operate the mine, the Department of Mines and Archeology, which is under the federal government, did not give permission.