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SC directs Sterlite to pay Rs 100 crore for polluting environment in Tamil Nadu

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New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Tuesday asked Vedanta group firm Sterlite Industries to pay compensation of Rs 100 crore for polluting the environment through its copper smelting plant in Tamil Nadu.

Despite the fine, the Supreme Court overruled an earlier order from the Madras high court to shut down the plant over long-standing environmental concerns, the bench headed by Judge A K Patnaik said.

The court said the compensation amount was to be paid in five years.

"Compensation must act as a deterrent and any amount less than Rs 100 crore would not have desired impact," the apex court said.

On Monday, Sterlite Industries had moved the National Green Tribunal challenging an order of Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board directing closure of its copper smelter plant in Tuticorin in the wake of an alleged noxious gas leak recently.

In its applications before the southern bench of the tribunal, the company also challenged another order of the TNPCB disconnecting the power supply to the unit located in Tuticorin, which was shut down on March 30.

The matter was posted to April 9 for further hearing.

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