Communist Party of India (CPI) general secretary A.B. Bardhan has written to Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan urging him to take an early decision on the K. Jayakumar Committee recommendations on the ecological damage caused by Hindustan Coca-Cola Beverages Ltd. at Plachimada in Palakkad district.

In his letter, received here about a fortnight ago, the CPI general secretary has asked the Chief Minister to follow up on the report of the Jayakumar Committee based on the principle of ‘polluter pays the price' laid down by the Supreme Court and initiate legal and administrative steps to assess the individual claims and the actual compensation to be decreed, informed sources in government said.

Mr. Bardhan has noted that the high-power committee set up by the State government in April 2009 to assess the extent of damages caused by the Coca-Cola plant at Plachimada had come out with its report after a thorough scientific assessment of the damages caused to ground water, human health, agricultural livestock, labour and livelihood and put the total damages at Rs.216.26 crore.

Recalling that the State government was compelled to constitute the high-power committee following a massive agitation at Plachimada, Mr. Bardhan wanted the Chief Minister to act expeditiously in the matter so that the company was made to pay damages.

According to government sources, the Chief Minister has forwarded the letter to the Water Resources Department. A decision on the Jayakumar Committee report is pending owing to delay in the Industries Department giving its views on it to the State Cabinet.

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