India plans to fell ancient forest to create 40 new coalfields


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Narendra Modi’s dream of a ‘self-reliant India’ comes at a terrible price for its indigenous population

Over the past decade, Umeshwar Singh Amra has witnessed his homeland descend into a battleground. The war being waged in Hasdeo Arand, a rich and biodiverse Indian forest, has pitted indigenous people, ancient trees, elephants and sloths against the might of bulldozers, trucks and hydraulic jacks, fighting with a single purpose: the extraction of coal.

Yet under a new “self-reliant India” plan by the prime minister, Narendra Modi, to boost the economy post-Covid-19 and reduce costly imports, 40 new coalfields in some of India’s most ecologically sensitive forests are to be opened up for commercial mining.

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Read more: theguardian.com

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India plans to fell ancient forest to create 40 new coalfields

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