The Union Ministry of Forests has dismissed a plea by Athiappa Chemicals seeking a stay on the Puducherry Pollution Control Committee's order directing the factory management to close down its unit.

The PPCC had directed the management to close the factory at Mettupalayam Industrial Estate after residents complained of pollution. After inspection in October last, the PPCC issued an order directing the management to close it down, a press note issued by the PPCC said.

The factory management approached the National Green Tribunal challenging the order, but the NGT dismissed it. The authorities approached the Madras High Court, which directed them to approach the Ministry of Environment and Forests

The Ministry, which is the appellate authority, rejected the plea for grant of interim stay, the note said.