Notice to TN govt on Sterlite Copper plant

KT NEWS SERVICE. Dated: 9/1/2020 12:32:46 PM

NEW DELHI, Aug 31: The Supreme Court on Monday admitted a Special Leave Petition of Vedanta Limited and issued notice to the Tamil Nadu government on the petition and interim relief sought, returnable in four weeks, for reopening of its Tuticorin copper smelter plant, the biggest in India, lying shut since 2018 in the ground of environment pollution.
In its order, the Bench of Justices Rohinton Fali Nariman, Navin Sinha and Indira Banerjee gave the company four weeks to file counter affidavit and rejoinder, if any, within two weeks thereafter. It said the matter be listed thereafter. The case is to be listed in the second half of November or thereafter.
The company has come in appeal against the Madras High Court's order on August 18, rejecting its plea to reopen the copper plant, accepting the pollution control board's stand that the firm's operations caused pollution. The High Court held that safeguarding the environment received primacy and economic considerations could have no role to play in such matters.
The plant was in operation from 1998 to 2018, but it was shut down by the Tamil Nadu government on May 28, 2018 after protests from the locals. The Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board in the backdrop of the violent protests against the unit, which left 13 people dead in police firing on May 21 and 22, 2018. The plant is closed since May 2018 when High Court upheld the pollution board's order for closing down the unit.



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