Chennai, May 12(BPNS)
Oxygen production in the Sterlite plant at Tuticorin is to commence from Wednesday and the first tanker will be out of the plant either on Wednesday night or Thursday morning, according to officials in charge of the production and monitoring of oxygen at the plant.
The initial production of oxygen will be low but will reach the maximum capacity of 1050 tonnes within 10 to 15 days time. The Liquefied Oxygen will be transported in tankers while the gaseous oxygen will be filled in cylinders and transported.
Around 300 people are working at the Sterlite plant in Tuticorin with oxygen production experts, engineers and other technicians engaged in the production of oxygen. The company has transferred oxygen experts from its other units to the Tuticorin unit to increase the pace of production of oxygen.
S Thiagarajan, Founder president ,Tuticorin Contractors association while speaking to IANS said, “Around 200 contract workers are engaged in preparatory work along with the staff of the plant. 75% of those who are working in contract are former employees of the company and they are working in shifts of eight hour each.”
It may be noted that the Supreme Court of India has allowed Vedanta company to operate its oxygen production units at Sterlite plant in Tuticorin as an extraordinary measure to tide over the oxygen crisis during the Covid pandemic.
The court had observed that Tamil Nadu government had met stakeholders extensively both at the executive and political levels and decided to let Vedanta operate its plant which would be able to produce 200MT of oxygen within 10 days.
The court had also made it clear that Vedanta would not be allowed to operate its copper smelting plant under the garb of this order.
It may be recalled that a police firing at the Tuticorin collectorate on May 22, 2018 on people protesting against the Copper smelting plant at Sterlite had killed 13 persons and injured more than a hundred. The plant was shut down after this incident and there were reports that the company is trying to open the plant through a backdoor by promising oxygen.