The Supreme Court on Tuesday directed Sterlite Industries Ltd. to file a fresh application before the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board to obtain its consent for continuance of the company’s copper plant at Tuticorin, which was allegedly causing environmental pollution.

A bench of justices R M Lodha and H L Gokhale asked the company to file its application within 15 days which shall be disposed of by the Board within a month after inquiring into and verifying its claims of complying with various safety and environmental norms.

The apex court further said its October 1, 2010, interim direction staying the operation of the Madras High Court order directing closure of the industry will continue and posted the matter for further hearing to March 28.

The bench also recorded an undertaking from Sterlite Industries’ counsel C A Sundram that it has complied with all “green belt” and “health” facilities norms required for ensuring public safety and health.

State’s Additional Advocate General Gurukrishna Kumar said the government would examine the claim made by the company in this regard and file its reply.

Sterlite Industries, a subsidiary of UK-based Vedanta Group, had moved the apex court yesterday against the order of the high court which had on September 28, 2010, ordered shutting down of the smelting plant for reportedly failing to comply with environmental norms.

The company, in a special leave petition against the order, had claimed the high court did not give it a proper hearing and ignored its submissions.