On 29 September, the Madras High Court ordered the closure of Sterlite Industries’ copper smelter in Thoothukudi for violating environmental laws. The final judgement was delivered 14 years after the NGO National Trust for a Clean Environment claimed that Sterlite, a prominent subsidiary of the $8 billion UK-based Vedanta Resources, was operating illegally. The two-member bench of the High Court agreed and ruled that the original environmental clearance of 1995 was illegal because it was issued without an Environmental Impact Assessment and public hearing, that licence conditions were violated by Sterlite, and that the violations were ignored by the Environment Ministry and the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board (TNPCB).
Two days later, the Supreme Court stayed the High Court order. The wait had begun again.
See http://www.tehelka.com/story_main47.asp?filename=Cr161010Courts_battle.asp.