THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: In the face of intense stir by the local residents, it was decided on Wednesday to temporarily put on hold the work at the LPG terminal at Puthuvype. Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said the project has not been shelved.
Pinarayi said the government would constitute a committee of experts to ascertain if there was any violation of Environment Clearance.
“The Indian Oil Corporation has agreed to stop the work till the panel submits its report,” he said after attending a meeting with Industries Minister A C Moideen, representatives of IOC and Janakiya Samara Samithi.
“The government is aware of the concerns raised by the residents (of Puthuvype). But the project cannot be abandoned as it is a Central project. If the state government withdraws from the project, it will send a negative message. The government has a clear vision on development,” Pinarayi said.
Welcoming the decision, Janakiya Samara Samithi chairman M B Jayaghosh said they would withdraw from the strike temporarily. However, he said their primary demand - abandoning the project - would remain undiluted. Jayaghosh said further course of action would be decided after discussions within the Samithi.
Without specifically mentioning the police action against protesters, Pinarayi said the government would look into all issues. The Chief Minister also said the local residents need not have any safety concern about the project.
“The plant is constructed as per international standards. There will not be any compromise on safety. The IOC will spend 1/3 of its project cost for ensuring safety. The plant is being constructed in such a manner that it will withstand Tsunami or bomb blasts and even leaks will be plugged automatically,” he said.
Citing the green tribunal order, Pinarayi said the IOC went ahead with the project after receiving Environment Clearance in 2010.