Vedanta group firm Sterlite Industries Tuesday said it will approach the Tamil Nadu government for necessary approvals for restarting its copper unit in Tuticorin, hours after the Supreme Court paved the way for its reopening by declining to stay a green tribunal order.
Sterlite said it was looking forward for the restart of "one of the best Copper smelters of the world as we remain committed towards world class environmental standards."
"We are approaching the state government for necessary approvals for restarting the smelter as per the Supreme Court directions," a statement from Sterlite said.
Earlier Tuesday, the top court refused to stay the December 15 order of the National Green tribunal setting aside the state government's decision to close the copper plant which was at the centre of massive protests over pollution concerns.
A bench comprising Justices RF Nariman and Navin Sinha also stayed the December 21, 2018 status quo order issued by the Madurai bench of Madras High Court in respect of re-opening the plant.
It said the directions of the NGT would continue to subsist and will be subject to the ultimate outcome of the appeal filed by the Tamil Nadu government and sought Sterlite's response on the appeal.
Sterlite thanked the people of Tuticorin for their ''support'', saying it will go a long way in promoting socio-economic development in the region.
The state government has moved the top court against the December 15, 2018 order of the NGT, saying the tribunal had "erroneously" set aside various orders passed by the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board (TNPCB) last year with regard to the Sterlite plant.
It said the tribunal had consequentially directed the TNPCB to pass fresh orders of renewal of consent and issue authorisation to handle hazardous substances to the Vedanta Limited.
The NGT had set aside the state government's May 28 last order for permanent closure of the Sterlite copper plant, saying it was "non sustainable" and "unjustified".
The state government issued the closure order after violent protests against the copper plant in Tuticorin led to death of 13 people in police firing on May 22 and 23 last year.
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