“As the plant runs less than 50% of its present
capacity, how come the company plans to source bauxite of 15.5million ton per
annum for the 6 mpta project?” – asked social activist Prafulla Samantara in a
letter to SPCB.
“The probable sources
of Bauxite mentioned in the EIA such as Karlapat is part of a Wildlife Sanctuary
and the other one Niyamgiri is already rejected by Gramsabha after the historic
judgment of Supreme Court (SC) of India,” Samantara added.
The company that
initially aimed to mine bauxite from the Niyamgiri was denied by the tribal
village council meetings organised after a Supreme Court directive. It is now trying to
get the mineral from other bauxite reserves allotted to L&T in the district.
However the troubles for Vedanta doesn’t seem to end there because the newly
mapped reserves are part of Karlapat wildlife sanctuary, which is also a tiger
The major hurdle on
the way to mining Karlapat bauxite reserves would be the process of getting the
proposals approved by the tribals in their village council meetings, called
gramsabha, in compliance of the SC directive in case of Niyamgiri.
So, even if the company gets its
expansion plan approved, the abovementioned issues in regard to mineral
extraction and sourcing are going to trouble the company and operation of its
As such, on allegations that the particular plant
is a threat to local environment and to the livelihood sources, Vedanta is
facing strong opposition from the local tribal people and a number of
international organisations working to safeguard the rights of indigenous
communities across the globe.