Closure notice to 550 Morbi ceramic units
AHMEDABAD: Nearly half of all units at India’s largest ceramic cluster, in Morbi and Wankaner, were issued closure notices by the Gujarat Pollution Control Board (GPCB) on Saturday, following the National Green Tribunal order that all units running on coal gasifiers be shut down. As many as 550 of the 1,000-odd manufacturing units in the cluster are facing closure as they run on coal gasifiers.
The notice, issued by GPCB’s Morbi unit head D M Taker, warns that punitive measures will be taken if units fail to switch to LNG/PNG in seven days. On Wednesday, the NGT’s Delhi bench ordered that coal gasifiers be dismantled and directed ceramics units to switch to LNG/PNG if they wanted to continue operations. This measure to curb pollution is likely to disrupt production in the Rs 40,000-crore industry. The NGT issued these directions in response to a petition by a Palanpur resident, Babubhai Saini.
The closure notice warns that if any unit fails to comply with the NGT directions, strict action will be taken without any any chance of a hearing. GPCB also cautioned that prosecution under Section 41(2) of the Water Act, 1974 and Section 37 of the Air Act,1981, will be initiated against non-compliant units, and could result in imprisonment for up to one year and six months.