TN to appeal against NGT order on Sterlite

TN to appeal against NGT order on Sterlite

Sterlite Copper plant in Thoothukudi

Tamil Nadu government is likely to file an appeal before the Supreme Court against National Green Tribunal (NGT) order allowing reopening of Vedanta-owned Sterlite Copper plant in Thoothukudi.

Sources said the appeal will be filed on Tuesday by advocates representing Tamil Nadu. The NGT had on Saturday set aside the order of the Tamil Nadu government to close down the factory following the death of 13 people in police firing during protests against expansion plans of Sterlite Copper. The closure was carried out through government Order, which the NGT struck down saying it was “unjustified” on an appeal filed by Sterlite Copper.

The 40-page order by the bench headed by NGT chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel tore into the Tamil Nadu government for closing the plant by blindly endorsing the views of the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board (TNPCB). While imposing a slew of conditions like monitoring the groundwater regularly, the bench directed the TNPCB to pass fresh order of renewal of consent within three weeks.

“We allow this appeal, set aside the impugned orders and direct the TNPCB to pass fresh order of renewal of consent and authorization to handle hazardous substances, in the light of above finding, subject to appropriate conditions for protection of environment in accordance with law within three weeks from today,” the bench had said.

The NGT also asked Sterlite Copper to invest within three years Rs 100 crore on welfare of inhabitants of the area as it had offered to do and to take steps for safeguarding environment, like creating a dedicated website where the stakeholders can lodge their environment-related grievances.