HC Judge recuses himself from Sterlite case

Justice K K Sasidharan of the Madras High Court has recused himself from hearing the case filed by Sterlite Copper to reopen the Thoothukudi plant.

He announced the decision when the case was listed to come up this morning before the bench that also had Justice Asha.

Meanwhile, Sterlite Technologies’ promoters Twin Star Overseas has released the entire quantum of pledged shares. The company had pledged 20.94 crore shares (52.01 per cent of its total equity capital), with financial institutions, said a release.

“…we have removed the entire pledge on STL, and remain committed to the highest level of corporate governance and our shareholding in the company,” said Anil Agarwal, group Chairman.

Thoothukudi Collector Sandeep Nanduri on Monday said about 60,000 tonnes of gypsum was still left at Sterlite plant, while other chemicals had been removed. “Gypsum is being moved after identifying buyers,” he said.

Sterlite Copper recently expressed hope that it will resume operations in the next couple of months at its Tutocrin plant which was shut after 13 people died during protests a year ago.

On May 22, 2018, anti-Sterlite protests turned violent with the agitators fighting pitched battles with the police and 13 people were killed in police firing.

Sterlite Copper has formulated a plan to use only desalinated water for its requirement on recommencing its operations, according to its CEO Pankaj Kumar, who added that the company plans to set up a water plant to remineralise the desalinated water to be supplied to villagers around the company.