A bench of the Madras High Court comprising Justices T.S. Sivagnanam and V. Bhavani Subbaroyan on August 18 dismissed the plea by Vedanta Limited challenging the Tamil Nadu government’s closure of its Sterlite Copper plant at Thoothukudi.
The plant was ordered shut by the Tamil Nadu government on May 28, 2018, after police firing killed 13 people protesting the polluting plant in their locality.
Sterlite Copper is India’s second largest copper smelter. The plant’s licence was not renewed.
The protest started among locals and environmental activists, who said that the air was becoming polluted and so was the water. The management of the plant, which used to produce over 400,000 tonnes annually, had denied those accusations.
The National Green Tribunal had dismissed the government’s closure decision and had ordered Vedanta to deposit Rs 2.50 crore as a token amount for their failures and asked the company to spend Rs 100 crores within a period of three years for the welfare of the inhabitants in the area.
-India Legal Bureau