DARRA ADAMKHEL: The elders of Akhurwal tribe have called upon the government to resolve the issue of royalty and other benefits of coalmines which have not been given to the tribe by the administration.

People of the area said while talking to TNN that Akhurwal tribe has been kept deprived of the revenue earned through the coalmines. They alleged that the administration and contractors have occupied the coalmines and the local population has been kept deprived of its benefits.

The elders said the tribesmen will be compelled to hold agitation if they did not get their due rights. They said the administration and coalmine companies will be responsible for any untoward situation during the agitation.

A university student from Akhurwal tribe said while talking to TNN that the administration had signed a deal with the local people under which it was agreed that the contracts of the coalmines will be given to local people and the area people will also get jobs in the coalmines. He said it was also agreed that the coalmines will never be expanded and work will be carried out within the existing range of the coalmines. He said the agreement also guaranteed share for the local people in the profit from the coalmines.

The student said the 10-point agreement was signed one and a half year ago. He said only one clause of the agreement is being implemented, while most of the clauses have not been implemented.

The student said although the tribesmen have received a small share in the profit, but most of the provisions of the agreements are being violated by the administration. He said Akhurwal tribesmen will stage protests if they did not get their rights. He said the government

Apart from dispute with the locals on benefits, the coalmines of Darra Adamkhel are also notorious for lack of facilities for the workers. Mishaps often happen in coalmines of Darra Adamkhel which result into casualties. Coalmine workers work under extremely dangerous circumstances and the incidents of gas leakage and suffocation are common. Due to lack of other opportunities, people agree to work in coalmines despite dangerous working conditions.

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