Sterlite plant would not be re-opened: Tamil Nadu government

Sterlite plant would not be re-opened: Tamil Nadu government thumbnail
CHENNAI: The Tamil Nadu government Saturday asserted that the Sterlite Industries’ plant in Tuticorin would not be re-opened as its policy decision to seal the Vedanta Ltd unit was in line with people’s sentiments.

This comes on a day when a three-member panel appointed by the National Green Tribunal (NGT) and led by former Meghalaya High Court Chief Justice Tarun Agrawal, is slated to visit the copper smelter plant in the southern district.

“Our stand is that once it is closed, it is closed. A policy decision was taken by the government and based on that the plant was sealed.They (Vedanta) have moved the NGT against the sealing and a panel was formed. We have moved the Supreme Court saying not even that panel is required,” Fisheries Minister D Jayakumar told reporters here.

Jayakumar said the local people were against the plant, and therefore the government took a decision to seal it “in line with the sentiments of the people of Tuticorin.”

“Once closed, it is closed. There is no chance of re-opening it by the government,” he asserted.

The Tamil Nadu government had ordered permanent closure of the copper smelter plant on environment grounds in the wake of protests by locals.

The locals held protests demanding the closure of the Sterlite factory for 99 days and the agitation turned violent on May 22 on its 100th day leading to 13 agitators being killed in police firing.

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