Tamil Nadu

High Court recommences hearing in case against closure of Sterlite unit

Counsel recaps submissions made three months ago when hearing got disrupted

After a gap of over three months, a Bench of Justices T.S. Sivagnanam and V. Bhavani Subbaroyan of the Madras High Court on Monday recommenced the hearing on a batch of writ petitions filed by Vedanta Limited against the closure of its Sterlite copper plant in Thoothukudi by the State government due to environmental concerns.

The Bench had heard the matter, involving voluminous case bundles, elaborately in the principal seat of the High Court in Chennai for over 28 sittings between June 20 and August 30 after which Justice Sivagnanam got deputed as administrative judge of the Madurai Bench of the High Court for a period of three months from September 3.

Immediately, the lawyers made a representation to the then Chief Justice Vijay Kamlesh Tahilramani for permitting the same Bench to complete the hearing expected to be wound up in six to seven days. However, she ordered that the case may instead be listed before Justices Sivagnanam and R. Tharani in the Madurai Bench of the High Court.

Within a few days after the administrative order was passed, Justice Tahilramani resigned. Hence, the lawyers made a fresh representation to Acting Chief Justice Vineet Kothari and he, in turn, accepted their request and ordered reconstitution of the same Bench comprising Justices Sivagnanam and Subbaroyan to hear the case.

However, the hearing could not take place since one of the judges was in Madurai and the other in Chennai. Video conferencing was not found to be a viable solution due to references that had to be made. Therefore, the lawyers were left with no choice but to wait for Justice Sivagnanam’s return to Chennai on December 2.

In the meantime, they also made a representation to incumbent Chief Justice Amreshwar Pratap Sahi, who ordered reconstitution of the Bench, which has now decided to hear the case at a stretch from Monday to Friday. Senior counsel C. Aryama Sundaram, representing Vedanta, took the lead and began recapping his submissions made three months ago.

Why you should pay for quality journalism - Click to know more

Recommended for you
This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

Printable version | Apr 3, 2020 11:53:09 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/high-court-recommences-hearing-in-case-against-closure-of-sterlite-unit/article30324861.ece

Next Story