Mon chief promises to stop limestone cave project

Maung Maung Shwe Myaing
The biggest natural cave, Pharbaung, in Kyaikmaraw


Kyaikmaraw – Mon State Chief Minister Dr Aye Zan promised locals he would stop the company which is exploring the biggest limestone cave in Kyaikmaraw, as the cave is respected for its ancient pagodas, millions of bats and rich diversity of species.
“Pharbaung cave is the biggest of the natural limestone caves. It has ancient pagodas and millions of bats are living in it. Many species are living there.
“Kayin and Mon came to pay homage to the pagodas in festival time. They pray for their jobs and businesses. Locals from 14 nearby villages are worried about the exploration work at the cave started by a company. They have expressed their concern to the state chief minister and he promised to stop the project,” said Saw Aung Myint Khine, Minister for Ethnics Affair for the state.
Kyaikmaraw Township administrator Kyaw Myint said: “The chief minister promised to send a letter to stop the project and … it will  be directly sent to Myint Company and we will have a copy of it. We will notify about it to village administrator offices in Pharbaung. The company is not exploring the cave for limestone. It is taking samples of them.”
Ministry of Forestry announced on October 12 last year that it would preserve about 466 acres of land located in the township as the Pharbaung wildlife reserve. Trespassing, digging and cultivating land will be banned.