A cave with a huge number of stalactites in Thanh Hoa Province is being destroyed by quarrying activities as local authorities fail to act.
According to complaints from the locals, the cave was discovered not long ago after a quarry explosion in Ha Tan Commune, Ha Trung District. However, instead of informing the authorities, the mining firm went on taking the cave apart. Both the regular stones and the stalactites that took hundreds or thousands of years to be created have been taken away. The entrance of the cave is completely destroyed and there are still many explosions being carried out nearby.
The cave is located in the quarry of Thanh Dong Company who was granted quarrying licence in May 2016 by Thanh Hoa People’s Committee. Both the people’s committees of Ha Tan Commune and Ha Trung District said they were unaware of the cave.
Nguyen Thanh Chung, Chairman of Ha Tan Commune, said, “I only knew about it after being informed by the Department of Natural Resources and Environment. There are 11 quarries in the commune. How can I know who discovered the cave?”
Nguyen Minh Chau, deputy director of Thanh Hoa Department of Natural Resources and Environment said that the firm should have had informed the authorities immediately. “We asked to stop activities at and around the cave to wait for directives from the provincial people’s committee. The communal and district people’s committees must monitor the site,” he said.
On May 17, Chau signed an official document reporting about the cave. According to Chau, the newly-discovered cave in the quarry of Thanh Dong Company is 25 metres long, 20 metres wide and about 10 metres high. The stalactites could be used as decorations or the cave could be preserved as a tourism site.
Thanh Hoa People’s Committee said they had assigned the Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism to work with related agencies to survey the site and propose suitable solutions.
By Binh Minh (dtinews)