Amid the biggest pandemic the world has ever seen, there was yet another tragedy
witnessed by the people of Vishakapatnam, Andhra Pradesh.11 people lost their lives (and several others injured) on 7 May 2020 at around 3 am in the morning due to leakage of toxic gas, most likely to be styrene, from a chemical
the plant owned by LG Polymers Ltd.
NGT took suo-moto cognizance of the matter and began a judicial probe immediately
ordering LG Polymers to make an initial deposit of 50 Cr/- towards liability. The
committee established by the NGT noted that the company did not have a valid
environmental clearance to be issued by the competent authority.
The bench, while imposing absolute liability of the company, directed the 5o cr/-
deposited by the company to be spent on restoration. It held that “The company has
operated without EC [environmental clearance] and the State PCB, on account of its
ignorance of the law or otherwise, gave ‘Consent to Establish’ and ‘Consent to Operate’
in violation of the law. The amount deposited has thus to be appropriated towards part
liability and interim compensation, subject to further others”. The bench was headed
by Chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel.