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environmental and pollution preventive measures =rectification methods instead of closing the unit =The High Court has by the impugned judgment inter alia directed that the industrial unit of the petitioner be

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 SPECIAL LEAVE PETTION (C) NOs.28116-28123 OF 2010

Sterlite Industries (I) Ltd. Etc. Etc. ... Petitioners


Union of India & Ors. Etc. Etc. ... Respondents

 O R D E R


 We have heard Mr. C.A. Sundram, learned counsel for 

the petitioners, Mr. Vaiko in-person for respondent no.1, 

Mr. V. Prakash, learned counsel for the respondent no.2, 

Mr. Guru Krishna Kumar, learned Additional A.G. for the 

Government of Tamil Nadu, Mr. Subramanium Prasad, 

learned counsel for the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board, 

and Mr. Vijay Panjwani, learned counsel for the Central 

Pollution Control Board.

2. The High Court has by the impugned judgment inter 

alia directed that the industrial unit of the petitioner be 


closedown immediately because of the environmental 

pollution caused by the industrial unit. On 01.10.2010, 

this Court directed that the matter be listed on 18.10.2010 

and stayed the impugned judgment of the High Court till 

then. On 18.10.2010, the Court issued notice and 

continued the interim stay. The Court has continued the 

interim stay from time to time. 

3. When the matter was taken up on 25.02.2011, the 

Court after hearing learned counsel for the parties was of 

the view that an independent assessment of the present 

situation and condition of the industrial unit of the 

petitioners, and its effect with reference to environmental 

pollution by National Environmental Engineering Research 

Institute (NEERI), after a joint inspection with the officials of 

Central Pollution Control Board, Tamil Nadu Pollution 

Control Board and the PIL petitioners before the High Court, 

will help the Court to arrive at a decision and accordingly 

directed NEERI to make a pollution and environmental 

impact assessment and submit its report. Accordingly, 

NEERI carried out the inspection during 6th to 8th April, 

2011 and 19th to 22nd April, 2011 and submitted its report.


4. On 18.07.2011, the Court directed the Tamil Nadu 

Government as also the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board 

to submit their comments/suggestions with reference to the 

NEERI report so that the Court can have a clear view about 

the existing position. On 25.08.2011, the Court after 

perusing the Status Report of the Tamil Nadu Pollution 

Control Board directed the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control 

Board to file a synopsis specifying the deficiencies with 

reference to the NEERI report and suggest control measures 

that should be taken by the petitioners so that the Court 

can consider the direction to be issued for remedial 

measures which can be monitored by the Tamil Nadu 

Pollution Control Board. 

5. The Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board has filed 

along with an affidavit dated 30.08.2011, a Chart of 

deficiencies and measures to be implemented by the 

petitioners-industry which is to the following effect:


Sl.No Deficiency Measures Suggested

I To improve the (1) Hoods with extraction system 

 emission are to be installed for 

 control collection of fugitive emission 

 efficiency in at (i) smelter lance, (ii) 

 the process smelter feed port, (iii) rotary 


 section holding furnace-slag 

 granulation & (iv) matte 

 tapping and to be connected 

 to the control measures. In 

 view of the above additional 

 emission load, the emission 

 control measures of 

 scrubbing system has to be 


 (2) One bag house at smelter is 

 to be installed prior to 

 scrubber, to control dust 


 (3) One bag house at converter is 

 to be installed prior to 

 scrubber, to control dust 


 (4) Regulative measure for 

 periodical soot blowing 

 operation in waste heat 

 recovery boiler is to be 

 implemented to prevent 

 sudden emission load of soot 


II To improve (1) Ducts to collect all the fugitive 

 fugitive emission and control measure 

 emission of flue gas desulphurization 

 control system consisting of bag filter 

 and 2 stage lime scrubber are 

 to be provided, as per the 

 engineering study carried out.

 (2) Gypsum conveyor belt is to be 

 made fully closed so as to 

 prevent fugitive emissions.

 (3) The unpaved roads within the 


 industry premises should be 

 pave to control the dust due 

 to movement of vehicles.

 (4) The frequency of water 

 sprinkling on roads is to be 

 increased to 4 times per shift 

 to reduce the re-suspended 

 dust particles due to 

 movement of vehicles.

 (5) Permanent water sprinklers 

 are to be provided at gypsum 

 pond area and roc phosphate 


III To improve (1) The chemical treatment 

 effluent comprising coagulation-

 treatment flocculation and settling is 

 operation to be operated effectively to 

 optimize the treatment 

 efficiency so as to improve 

 the performance of fluoride 


 (2) The existing reverse 

 osmosis plant is to be 

 operated to the maximum 

 capacity of 1,600 kiloliters 

 per day and maintained so 

 as to recover, recycle and 

 reuse the permeate.

 (3) Iron removal plant as a 

 pretreatment facility to 

 reverse osmosis system is 

 to be installed for 

 sustaining the membrane 

 life and achieving optimum 

 membrane performance.

IV To improve (1) The evaporation system along 


 disposal of with drying facility must be 

 rejects arising expanded to cope up with the 

 from effluent capacity of the reverse 

 treatment osmosis plant and improved 

 Plant to generate the concentrate in 

 solid form.

 (2) The reverse osmosis rejects 

 stored in the temporary 

 storage ponds must be taken 

 for concentration and drying 

 followed by disposal in 

 secured landfill facility.

 (3) The temporary storage ponds 

 provided for disposal of 

 reverse osmosis rejects must 

 be removed, in view of 

 capacity augmentation of 

 evaporator system.

V To improve raw (1) The raw material of copper 

 material concentrate is to be stored in 

 storage and a closed shed and received & 

 handling transferred in closed 

 conveyor system.

 (2) All the chemical storage 

 tanks are to be provided with 

 dykes to avoid the possibility 

 of any accidental discharge.

VI To improve (1) The deposited silt in the storm 

 storm water water drains is to be removed 

 drainage and and disposed off in secured 

 collection landfill facility and this is to 

 system be practiced regularly to 

 prevent any pollutant 

 carryover and to avoid water 


 (2) Additional rainwater collection 

 reservoir with storage capacity 


 of 30,000-50,000 cubicmeter, 

 is to be provided to prevent 

 discharge of runoff from the 

 critical storage/process plant 

 areas, during peak 

 precipitation, taking into 

 consideration of the recent 

 updated meteorological data 

 and maximum industrial 


VII To improve (1) The sold waste of slag is to be 

 solid waste stored within the stipulated 

 disposal 10 hectares of land with a 

 restricted stacking height of 

 12 meters so as to adhere 

 with the safe load bearing 

 capacity of 25 metric ton per 

 square meter of the 

 underlying soil/land in that 


 (2) The slag is to be disposed for 

 beneficial uses, such as road 

 formation, shot blasting, 

 abrasive production, cement 

 aggregate making and other 

 relevant areas of application, 

 with approval from concerned 

 agencies. The monthly 

 disposal must be at least 50% 

 more than the monthly 

 generation quantities of both 

 slag and gypsum.

VIII To improve (1) Additional electromagnetic 

 monitoring of flow meters (12 Nos.) are to be 

 air quality, provided to assess (i) raw 

 effluent and water consumption (4 Nos.), 

 water (ii) rain water consumption (3 

 consumption Nos.) and (iii) waste water 

 generation & waste water 

 reuse (5 Nos.)


 (2) Online pH meter is to be 

 provided in reaction tanks of 

 the effluent treatment plants 

 to ensure optimum pH for 

 effective precipitation of the 


 (3) Fluoride concentration in 

 groundwater at gypsum 

 storage ponds is to be 

 regularly monitored, recorded 

 and ensured with the baseline 

 fluoride concentration.

 (4) Health monitoring of the 

 people living in the nearby 

 villages is to be carried out at 

 least once every six months.

IX To improve (1) Around 26 hectares of land 

 greenbelt within the industry premises 

 development is to be earmarked and 

 developed as greenbelt, to the 

 width of 25 meters.

 (2) Greenbelt cover should be 

 improved around the 

 periphery of the smelter 

 plant, slag yard, gypsum 

 pond and secured landfill 

 facility to act as barrier to 

 control secondary fugitive 


 (3) The native species (achras 

 sapota, azadirachta indica, 

 cassia fistula, cassia slamea, 

 casuarinas equisetifolia, 

 eucalyptus sp. Flcus 

 benghalensis, ficul eligiosa, 

 millingtonia hortensis, oringa 

 sp. Peltophorum 


 ferrugineum, polyathia 

 lingifclia, pongarnia pinnata, 

 prospis juliflora, tabefuia 

 rosea, terminalia catappa, 

 thespesia populnea, etc.) 

 should be planted in new 

 areas of greenbelt cover."

6. We direct the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board to 

issue directions, in exercise of its powers under the Air 

(Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981 and Water 

(Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974, to the 

petitioners-industry to carry out the aforesaid measures and 

remove the aforesaid deficiencies within such time as it 

thinks reasonable and proper. The directions will be issued 

by the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board within two weeks 

from today. The matter will be listed in the first week of 

January, 2012 and the interim stay of the impugned 

judgment will continue till then. 


 (R. V. Raveendran)


 (A. K. Patnaik)

New Delhi,October 11, 2011. 

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One thought on “environmental and pollution preventive measures =rectification methods instead of closing the unit =The High Court has by the impugned judgment inter alia directed that the industrial unit of the petitioner be

  1. Great post, keep up the great work!

    Posted by Partition Recovery | October 19, 2011, 6:30 AM

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