Plea By Vedanta Sterlite Copper Plant Seeking Extension Of Deadline: Supreme Court Expected To Hear Next Friday
The Supreme Court on Friday said that it will hear the plea by Vedanta Sterlite copper plant, Tamil Nadu - seeking an extension of the deadline granted by the Top Court till July 31, 2021, for producing medical oxygen next Friday i.e. on August 6, 2021.
Senior Advocate Harish Salve mentioned the matter before the bench of Justice DY Chandrachud and Justice MR Shah.
“We have filed an application seeking extension of the deadline set by the Top Court for continuing production of medical oxygen,” submitted Senior Advocate Harish Salve.
Opposing the application, Senior Advocate Kapil Sibal appearing for the State of Tamil Nadu said that there was a sufficient amount of oxygen.
On April 27, 2021, full Judge Bench of Justice DY Chandrachud, Justice L Nageswara Rao, and Justice Ravindra Bhat allowed the operation of the plant on a stand-alone basis, clarifying that no equity be granted in favor of the applicant to demand the running of the plant as a whole, in future till July 31, 2021.
The bench directed the Government of Tamil Nadu to constitute a committee with government officials as well as two environment experts (to be nominated By MoEF; the choice to be made by Respondents 9&10). The role of the committee will be oversight and proper functioning of the Plant.
“MoEF and NEERI can appoint 3 people and a choice can be given to Vedanta for appointing 2 people & these people can continue to engage with the community,” Court said.
Only such persons will be permitted inside the plant, as required for conducting and managing the oxygen generation facility.
“The plant will be allowed only for the production of oxygen and that the applicant will not be allowed to enter Copper smelting plant and the allied facilities”, the bench added.
The State of Tamil Nadu was further directed to expedite the grant of clearances etc.
In order to meet the extraordinary circumstances, the State Government in Para 6 of the memo, had submitted consensus amongst all stakeholders to open the Vedanta Sterlite plant.
Senior Advocate, Mr. Salve had submitted that Vedanta would run an oxygen plant only to generate the National demand of Oxygen and that in about 10 days, the applicant would be in a position to produce 200 MT of Oxygen.
Case Title: Vedanta Limited v. State of Tamil Nadu | SLP (c) 10159-10168 of 2020