Tamil Nadu chief minister EK Palaniswami announced that his government has issued an order, directing the state pollution control board to seal Vedanta group’s copper Tuticorin, and close it permanently.
It’s another matter the pollution control board has taken cognizance of protests to not renew the environmental clearances and not hard facts it’s supposed to judge.
The protests and the subsequent death of 13 protesters in Police firing is somehow being blamed on the plants management – sealing its fate. However the local administration that resorted to firing have not been penalized, nor the leaders which flamed the demonstration to become a mob have been charged. The AIADMK government has successfully converted its failure to maintain law and order into a death sentence for the Vedanta investments in the state.
What is even more interesting is the fact that a similar seizure of the plant was ordered by late Jailalitha in 2013, however the national green tribunal has had reversed the order.
While the locals and state fight hard against progress, it’s also a fact that much of the ‘promised progress’ has been married to the crony capitalism. In the future that will be driven on batteries, powering everything, from Cars to Mobiles, loss of a 400,000-tonne per annum capacity copper plant can only be called a tragedy for the state.