Villagers demand reopening of Sterlite plant

Residents of Saaminaththam at the collectorate in Thoothukudi on Monday.

Residents of Saaminaththam at the collectorate in Thoothukudi on Monday.

Residents from villages around here and two areas of the coastal town on Monday submitted a petition at the Collectorate seeking the Collector’s intervention in reopening Sterlite Copper as the plant’s closure had left them unemployed besides denying them the benefit of welfare schemes.

Residents from Saaminaththam, Pudur Pandiyapuram, Madaththur, Silverpuram, Balaiyapuram, Subramaniyapuram, Fatima Nagar and Our Lady of Snows Basilica came to the Collectorate separately on and submitted petition seeking the reopening of the plant that remained sealed since May 2018 following protests that witnessed the killing of 13 persons in police firing.

The petitioners said they were getting employment directly or indirectly when the plant functioned and lost their livelihood after it closed. After battling poverty, most of them moved out of the town to far-off places in search of jobs, but in vain. Consequently, the jobless breadwinners had to do menial job to feed their families.

“Besides providing us with jobs, Sterlite Copper organised medical camps in the villages for the benefit of our families and gave financial assistance to self-help groups, while unemployed youth were equipped with employable skills,” they said.

“It gave assistance to conduct marriages of poor women, purified drinking water and renovated temples. Since the plant closed down, we have been left unemployed and the welfare measures are not available to us. Hence, the District Collector should take steps to reopen Sterlite Copper and ensure distribution of purified drinking water,” the petitioners further said.

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Printable version | May 22, 2022 6:57:04 am |