MAC: Mines and Communities

Vedanta indicted over copper plant pollution - villagers demand its closure

Published by MAC on 2018-02-13
Source: News Scroll Press Trust of India (2018-02-13)

250 people start "indefinite" protest fast

Villagers, sorely impacted by London-listed Vedanta's Tuticorin copper smelter in Tamil Nadu, have commenced an "indefinite fast"  against its pollution of their water resources and air.

Although they were arrested by police, later reports claim they are refusing to halt their protests, and are demanding that the plant itself be closed.

In 2017, the Norwegian Council on Ethics strongly indicted the smelter, despite acknowledging that some improvements had been made to its damaging operations (See: Norwegian Ethics Council report on Vedanta )

Villagers begin indefinite fast to shut down Sterlite Plant

The News Scroll

12 February 2018

Tuticorin : Residents of a village near the Sterlite Copper plant here today commenced an indefinite stir to close down the plant, which they alleged was polluting ground water.

The people of Kumararediyapuram village commenced their stir near the corporation park, which is maintained by the plant and near a traffic signal.

The agitators demanded that the district administration take steps to immediately close down the plant, which, they alleged had completely contaminated ground water, making it unsafe for drinking.


Protesters against Sterlite Copper plant arrested

Press Trust of India

13 February 13

Around 250 people on an indefinite fast protesting against the Sterlite Copper's plant here and its proposed expansion were today arrested, police said.

The protesters from nearby Reddiarpuram village near here launched the fast yesterday alleging that the plant, part of the Vedanta Group, was polluting ground water in their area. As the villagers continued their fast despite efforts by top district officials led by Sub-Collector M S Prasanth to persuade them to give up the stir, police arrested them. Earlier, a protester alleged the plant, located in the SIPCOT Industrial Complex, was affecting their water sources and caused air pollution. "We are having breathing problem.

We are forced to observe fast as the district administration did not take any action," he told the officials. He said the people of the village had petitioned the district collector several times seeking closure of the unit, but no action had been taken.

The people were unhappy with the proposed expansion of the plant and voiced concern it would further affect the environment. They not only wanted the expansion to be stopped, but the plant itself to be closed. Some school children in their uniform were also present at the fast venue while DMK district unit Secretary Geetha Jeevan joined the agitation today. Police said those arrested had been lodged in a local wedding hall.

 

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