May 28, 2018 / 5:11 AM / 25 days ago

Tamil Nadu deputy chief minister says will take all steps to shut down Vedanta's copper smelter

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - Tamil Nadu deputy head said on Monday his government would take all steps to permanently shut a copper smelter run by London-listed Vedanta Resources after deadly protests demanding its closure on environmental grounds.

FILE PHOTO: A private security guard stands in front of the main gate of Sterlite Industries Ltd's copper plant, a unit of London-based Vedanta Resources, in Tuticorin, in Tamil Nadu March 24, 2013. REUTERS/Stringer/File Photo

Residents and environmental activists say emissions from the plant, India’s second biggest, are polluting the air and water, affecting people’s health.

Resident have been demanding the closure of the plant, said O. Panneerselvam, the deputy chief minister of Tamil Nadu.

“The government will take all steps to permanently shut down the plant,” he told reporters.

Last week, 13 were killed after police opened fire on protesters demanding that the smelter in the port city of Thoothukudi be shut down.

Demonstrators shout slogans during a protest, after at least 13 people were killed when police fired on protesters seeking closure of plant on environmental grounds in town of Thoothukudi in Tamil Nadu, in Chennai, India, May 24, 2018. REUTERS/P.Ravikumar

Reporting by Malini Menon; Editing by Sanjeev Miglani

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