India: Mahuva farmers fined for opposing proposed Nirma cement plant

India: Mahuva farmers fined for opposing proposed Nirma cement plant
Published: 24 June 2013


The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has imposed a fine of INR100,000 (US$1675) on farmers and on the Union Ministry of Environment & Forest (MOEF) who opposed Nirma Ltd's proposed cement plant situated at Mahuva, Bhavnagar district. The tribunal imposed the fine on the two parties on 6 June, while dismissing two of their applications that sought to stay one of the tribunal's orders and terming the applications as "vexatious and abuse of process of law".

The controversy related to the proposed cement plant reached NGT after the MoEF revoked the environment clearance granted to Nirma for the proposed plant at the site in December 2011.

Following the MOEF decision, the Supreme Court had disposed of an appeal moved by the agitating farmers challenging an order of the Gujarat High Court (HC) that gave a green signal to Nirma project. The apex court had left Nirma with liberty to approach the NGT against the decision of the MoEF and it did so, accordingly.