Locals demand halt to quarrying in Linmway mountain range in Mrauk-U

Writer: 
Than Hlaing
Photo shows Linmway mountain range about 17 miles to the north of Mrauk-U town, Rakhine State.

Local people from Hteikwapyin village on August 13 submitted a letter to Rakhine State government demanding an end to production of stone from Linmway mountain range about 17 miles to the north of Mrauk-U.

The mountain range lies in the east of Hteikwapyin village with a population of over 2,000 living in about 400 houses. Local people have to rely on the mountain range as a pasture for their farm animals and as a water resource for themselves in summer when water is scarce. Moreover, the site is blessed with ancient cultural heritages.

"In ancient times, the first Danyawady empire fell and the second empire was established depending on Linmway mountain range. The site is historically significant. Such quarrying is not in accord with the law. This mountain range is crucial for needy local residents," said Kyaw Tin Win from Linmway Mountain Conservation Committee.

He said a lot of villages had to rely on the mountain range. With mountain depletion, those villagers would have difficulty with their living conditions. Moreover, pastures for their cattle would also be lost, he added.

"Indiscriminate quarrying has much impact on local people. Everyone knows that Mrauk-U town suffers increasing temperature year after year. Destroying such mountains and forests will create more heat. This is destruction to natural environment. We must stop it," said Kyaw Tin Win.

The complaint letter was addressed to chief minister of the state government. Copies of the complaint also went to speaker of Rakhine State Parliament, chairman of Forest and Mining Committee, State Minister for Agriculture, Forest and Mining, chairman of Rakhine Cultural Heritage Conservation Committee, the Department of Archaeology and National Museum (Mrauk-U) and other relevant departments.