Vedanta’s Sterlite copper plant to reopen in Tamil Nadu for the production of Oxygen

New Delhi: The demand for medical Oxygen is growing in India as the second wave of coronavirus has affected the nation. The Centre and the State are doing all the necessary efforts to boost the oxygen supply in the country. The Tamil Nadu Government has given its nod to Vedanta’s Sterlite copper plant to reopen for four months to produce medical-grade oxygen, increasing the supply of oxygen in the country.

The decision was taken in an all-party meeting on 26 April 2021 led by Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami. The meeting passed a resolution to allow Vedanta-owned Sterlite Copper to open its copper smelting plant in Thoothukudi for the production of medical-grade oxygen.

Vedanta in a statement, replying to the state government said that the plant will be committed to producing the entire capacity of 1,000 tonnes available for producing oxygen. And the oxygen will be distributed across the country to meet the demands of oxygen supply.

Supreme Court allows Vedanta to operate oxygen production
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The Supreme Court on 27 April 2021 has allowed Vedanta to operate an oxygen production unit at its Sterlite copper plant in Tuticorin, in Tamil Nadu, on a stand-alone basis. Justice DY Chandrachud said that “The plant shall be operated and only produce oxygen and for no other purpose,”

Vedanta submits before the Supreme Court that it will supply oxygen free of cost to people in need. Vedanta also informed that they will produce 200 MT of liquid oxygen within 10 days.

Supreme Court further ordered the Tamil Nadu Govt to form a Committee comprising of:

  • District Collector, Tuticorin
  • SP, Tuticorin
  • District Environmental Engineer
  • Sub-Collector, Tuticorin
  • Two govt officials with knowledge of affairs.

The Committee will be responsible to monitor the work of Vedanta.