Vedanta's Sterlite Copper unit
File photo of Vedanta's Sterlite Copper unit in Tuticorin | Representational image | PTI
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New Delhi: Mining giant Vedanta moved the Supreme Court on Wednesday against the Madras High Court order refusing to allow reopening of its Sterlite copper unit at Tuticorin in Tamil Nadu, which has been closed since May 2018 over pollution concerns.

The Tamil Nadu government has already filed a caveat in the top court seeking to be heard in the matter, before any order is passed in the matter.

On August 18, the Madras high court has rejected the plea of the company seeking to reopen the copper plant.

Accepting the state pollution control board’s stand that the firm’s operations were behind pollution, the court had said safeguarding the environment received primacy and economic considerations could have no role to play in such matters.

The high court had upheld the orders of the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board (TNPCB), directing closure of the unit in May 2018.

Vedanta had approached the High Court in February 2019, seeking to reopen the Sterlite plant which was closed following a May 23, 2018 order issued by the TNPCB in the backdrop of violent protests against the unit which left 13 people dead in police firing on May 21 and 22, 2018.

It had filed the petition in the high court as suggested by the Supreme Court, which had on February 18, 2019 set aside the National Green Tribunal order that allowed opening of the Sterlite Plant.

Also read: ‘In economy vs environment, latter reigns supreme’ — why HC upheld Vedanta plant closure


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