The Supreme Court on Thursday told the Meghalaya government that it was not satisfied with the steps taken so far for the rescue of 15 people who are trapped in an illegal coal mine in the state since December 13.
A bench comprising Justices A K Sikri and S Abdul Nazeer asked the Meghalaya government as to why it was not successful in rescuing these people.
The counsel, appearing for the state, told the court that they have taken adequate steps in the rescue operation and the Centre was also lending support to them.
"We are not satisfied. It is a question of life and death," the bench said.
The bench asked petitioner Aditya N Prasad, who had sought urgent steps for recuse of these people, to call a law officer of the Centre so that appropriate order could be passed immediately.
The bench will continue with the hearing during the day.
The rat-hole mine, located on top of a hillock fully covered with trees in East Jaintia Hills district, had got flooded when water from the nearby Lytein river gushed into it, trapping the miners.