Vedanta Aluminium’s Indian safety record is tarnished: Now it won’t get two prestigious UK awards
A subsidiary of controversy-dogged UK mining company Vedanta Resources has suffered not just one – but two – serious setbacks in its attempts to portray itself as “accident free”. On Tuesday 15 May, Vedanta Aluminium Ltd (VAL) was to receive the prestigious Silver Award from the UK’s Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) at a ceremony in Birmingham, Britain’s second largest city. This was based on claims, made by VAL to RoSPA, that no-one had been seriously injured at its Lanjigarh bauxite refinery in Orissa during the last reporting period. But, in fact, a VAL employee died in a fire at the Lanjigarh site last month, and several others were injured. Now, in response to vociferous criticisms by activists in India and the UK, including colleagues in London Mining Network, RoSPA has withheld the award, pending further investigation of the company’s safety record. The British Safety Council (BSC) has also suspended making a similar award to VAL at a gala banquet to be held in London last Friday.
A Third Strike finds Anil Agarwal “Out”: London Calling on new humiliation of Vedanta boss
Yet again, London-listed Vedanta Resources, and its head honcho Anil Agarwal, have fallen foul of international standards. Last week, its VAL subsidiary in Orissa had prestigious awards withdrawn – almost at the last minute – by two UK safety watchdogs. Now we learn that two global industry organisations also pulled their nomination of Mr Agarwal on learning about his company’s sullied record – this time as a “leader” in promoting “business ethics”.