Sterlite Copper
The plant was shut on May 23, 2018, after which all the hazardous materials were taken out between June 2018 and April 2022. File photo

Vedanta puts Tuticorin Sterlite Copper smelter on sale; invites EoI

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The Vedanta Group on Monday (June 20) invited Expressions of Interest (EoI) to sell its Sterlite Copper smelter in Tuticorin, Tamil Nadu. The last day to submit EoI is July 4.

The plant was shut down by the state government acting on the orders of the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board (TNPCB) on May 28, 2018, on grounds of violation of environmental norms, days after 13 people were killed in police firing during protests against the proposed expansion of the plant.

Also read: Madras HC scraps Vedanta’s plea, Sterlite Copper to remain shut

In December 2018, while hearing a plea filed by Vedanta, the National Green Tribunal (NGT), southern bench, had set aside the Tamil Nadu government’s order. However, in 2019, the Supreme Court overturned the NGT’s order and asked Vedanta to file a writ petition in the Madras High Court.

In 2021, the Supreme Court allowed Vedanta to reopen its Sterlite Copper smelter to produce medical oxygen at the facility.

Also read: TN against Vedanta reopening plant, SC retorts: ‘Why don’t you make oxygen?

In a newspaper advertisement, the company said, “Vedanta, in conjunction with Axis Capital, invites Expression of Interest for the sale of its Copper Plant along with Smelter Complex (Primary and Secondary), Sulphuric Acid Plant, Copper Refinery, Continuous Copper Rod plant, Phosphoric Acid plant, Effluent treatment plant, Captive Power Plant, RO Units, Oxygen generation unit, Residential complex with amenities.”

Also Read: TN allows Vedanta to temporarily operate oxygen units at Thoothukudi

According to the Vedanta Group, the plant produces “approximately 40% of India’s demand for copper, and contributes around ₹2,500 crore to exchequer, 12% of Thoothukudi port’s revenue, 95% market share for Sulphuric Acid in Tamil Nadu, direct employment of 5,000 people and another 25,000 indirectly through the value chain”.

Also read: ‘National calamity’: SC allows Vedanta to produce oxygen at Sterlite plant

“The plant meets highest standards of ESG and environment standards compared to global peers. The plant plays a vital role in meeting the growing domestic demand of copper and meeting India’s commitment to green economy. Vedanta is committed to the State and its people with the aim to contribute towards development, revenue and employment generation,” it added.

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