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Vedanta Plant In Thoothukudi Hit By Lack Of Maintenance – Report

Metal News - Published on Mon, 17 Jun 2019

The Edappadi K Palaniswami government had passed the order to shut the Sterlite Copper unit in May 2018, following protests against the copper plant’s expansion plan. In view of the Tamil Nadu government’s closure order, Vedanta Resources has been unable to get the necessary manpower and experts to maintain the plant. The damages caused to the plant due to lack of maintenance are estimated to be nearly INR 100 crore. And more crucially, due to this lack of maintenance, the plant is in danger of catching fire. Over a year has passed since the UK-based Vedanta Resources’ Sterlite Copper plant in Thoothukudi was ordered to be shut down by the Tamil Nadu government on 28 May 2018.

The Edappadi K Palaniswami government had passed the order to shut the copper unit following protests demanding its closure that had led to the death of 13 persons in police firing on 22 May last year.

In view of the Tamil Nadu government’s closure order, Vedanta Resources has been unable to get the necessary manpower and experts to maintain the plant.

Protests were held since February last year demanding the closure of Sterlite Copper by a section of people against the copper plant’s expansion plan. These people also charged the unit with causing pollution in the city, which the company has vehemently denied.

Following the closure, the management approached the courts. The National Green Tribunal has held that the grounds for ordering closure of Sterlite were illegal and ordered its reopening. However, the Tamil Nadu Government appealed against this in the Supreme Court arguing that the tribunal had no powers to order the reopening of the plant.

The Supreme Court upheld the Tamil Nadu government’s contention and set aside the tribunal’s order asking the state government to reopen the plant. The apex court, however, permitted Sterlite to move the Madras High Court for relief. That petition is still pending.

Even as the petition is waiting to be heard by the Madras High Court, the Sterlite copper plant is faced with another problem maintaining its modern plant in Thoothukudi. In view of Tamil Nadu Government’s closure order, Vedanta Resources has been unable to get the necessary manpower and experts to maintain the plant.

Source :

Posted By : Ratan Singh on Mon, 17 Jun 2019
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