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TN gov't allows partial reopening of Sterlite plant citing oxygen crisis amidst Covid pandemic

During an all-party meeting, the Opposition stressed that the oxygen production should not result in the resumption of other activities in the plant.

Sabrangindia 26 Apr 2021

Image Courtesy:businesstoday.in

An all-party meeting called by the Tamil Nadu government on April 26, 2021 decided to allow Vedanta's Sterlite Industries to produce oxygen for a four-month period in light of rising Covid-19 cases, reported news website Rediff.

The reopening of the copper smelter that was shut down in 2018 following pollution concerns, was earlier met with vehement protests by local activists and villagers. Many of them still remembered how police opened fire and killed 13 anti-Sterlite protesters at the time.

Despite that, members attending the meeting, which included Chief Minister K Palaniswami and DMK party members, resolved to partially reopen the plant as per court directive. Earlier, the Vedanta had moved the apex court to help produce oxygen and related equipment to fight the Covid-crisis.

However, DMK leader M. K. Stalin asserted that while the duration for oxygen production may be extended, other activities like copper manufacturing should not be allowed “at any cost.” He suggested that TANGEDCO stop the power supply on completion of four months. Further, he recommended that the plant offer the oxygen supply for free.

While a monitoring body, including locals, may oversee the functioning of the plant in Tuticorin, leaders said that the supply should first be diverted to Tamil Nadu and then to other states.

According to NDTV, Tamil Nadu is suffering from an excess of oxygen-dependent Covid-19 cases, requiring 450 metric tonnes (MTs) of liquid oxygen which is above the state's production capacity of 400 MTs. Meanwhile, on April 23, the Chief Justice of India S. A. Bobde said that regardless of who runs the plant, the production of oxygen is required to treat Covid-19 patients.

On April 25, the state government recorded 1,20,839 active coronavirus cases with 15,659 new cases and 82 deaths on Sunday.

Related:

Vedanta’s plea to reopen Sterlite copper plant stirs unrest among locals!
Consider supplying oxygen to Delhi from nearby plants: Delhi HC to Centre
Centre’s policy to not vaccinate elders at home unreasonable and arbitrary: Bombay HC
Sterlite plant to remain shut; Madras HC dismisses petition

TN gov't allows partial reopening of Sterlite plant citing oxygen crisis amidst Covid pandemic

During an all-party meeting, the Opposition stressed that the oxygen production should not result in the resumption of other activities in the plant.

Image Courtesy:businesstoday.in

An all-party meeting called by the Tamil Nadu government on April 26, 2021 decided to allow Vedanta's Sterlite Industries to produce oxygen for a four-month period in light of rising Covid-19 cases, reported news website Rediff.

The reopening of the copper smelter that was shut down in 2018 following pollution concerns, was earlier met with vehement protests by local activists and villagers. Many of them still remembered how police opened fire and killed 13 anti-Sterlite protesters at the time.

Despite that, members attending the meeting, which included Chief Minister K Palaniswami and DMK party members, resolved to partially reopen the plant as per court directive. Earlier, the Vedanta had moved the apex court to help produce oxygen and related equipment to fight the Covid-crisis.

However, DMK leader M. K. Stalin asserted that while the duration for oxygen production may be extended, other activities like copper manufacturing should not be allowed “at any cost.” He suggested that TANGEDCO stop the power supply on completion of four months. Further, he recommended that the plant offer the oxygen supply for free.

While a monitoring body, including locals, may oversee the functioning of the plant in Tuticorin, leaders said that the supply should first be diverted to Tamil Nadu and then to other states.

According to NDTV, Tamil Nadu is suffering from an excess of oxygen-dependent Covid-19 cases, requiring 450 metric tonnes (MTs) of liquid oxygen which is above the state's production capacity of 400 MTs. Meanwhile, on April 23, the Chief Justice of India S. A. Bobde said that regardless of who runs the plant, the production of oxygen is required to treat Covid-19 patients.

On April 25, the state government recorded 1,20,839 active coronavirus cases with 15,659 new cases and 82 deaths on Sunday.

Related:

Vedanta’s plea to reopen Sterlite copper plant stirs unrest among locals!
Consider supplying oxygen to Delhi from nearby plants: Delhi HC to Centre
Centre’s policy to not vaccinate elders at home unreasonable and arbitrary: Bombay HC
Sterlite plant to remain shut; Madras HC dismisses petition

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