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The Supreme Court Tuesday asked the Sterlite Industries to apply afresh to the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board for the renewal of its licence to run its Tuticorin copper smelting plant.

The plea would be decided after an inquiry by the board in accordance with pollution control laws, the court said.

The apex court bench of Justice R.M. Lodha and Justice H.L. Gokhale said that Sterlite Industries’ copper smelting plant would apply for the renewal of licence within 15 days and the board would decide on the application within one month.

The court passed the order after senior counsel C.A. Sundram, appearing for Sterlite Industries, said that all the recommendations made by the National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (NEERI) to remove the deficiencies in the plant had been implemented.

The apex court order came during a hearing on a petition by Sterlite Industries challenging a Madras High Court order that directed the closure of the smelting plant.

The high court by its Sep 28, 2010, order directed the immediate closure of the plant. The apex court by its interim order of Oct 1, 2010, stayed the operation of the high court order.

The case would next be heard March 28.



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