How a prohibited practice help the tunnel rescue?
Why is it illegal to mine rats?
This rat-mining technique has drawn a lot of criticism because of its dangerous working conditions, harm to the environment, and multiple accidents that have resulted in fatalities and injuries. According to experts, rat miners work in a hazardous environment because most mines are unregulated and lack safety precautions like adequate ventilation, structural support, or worker safety gear. Water pollution, deforestation, and land degradation are further effects of mining. The practice was outlawed by the National Green Tribunal (NGT) in 2014, and the ban was upheld in 2015.
Additional techniques employed to free the stranded labourers in the Silkyara tunnel
Drilling vertically: Using electrical tools and equipment, a boring machine is used for vertical drilling, which involves digging straight down from the ground. In the uttarakhand tunnel collapse instance, an 800-mm pipe was inserted to free the trapped labourers after a vertical drill bit through the earth.
Horizontal drilling, also known as auger mining, uses directional drills or horizontal auger machines, which are specialized instruments meant to drill holes horizontally or dig tunnels beneath the surface without uprooting the earth. These machines are used to dig tunnels and install gas and water pipes. But in the case of the uttarakhand tunnel collapse, the auger machine ran into metal obstacles and eventually malfunctioned beyond repair, making it impossible to release the trapped workers.