TIRUNELVELI/THOOTHUKUDI: Soft drink majors Pepsi and Coca-Cola had argued that the quantum of water they consume is minuscule when compared to the host of companies in the region.
They claim they are being unjustifiably targeted, an argument that has been accepted even by the Madras High Court. Prathista Business Solutions that employs 150 people consumes 0.33 MLD of the 1.5 MLD allocated to them by SIPCOT, and South India Bottling Company that employs 350 people consumes 0.263 MLD out of the 1.8 MLD allotted to them, according to the response they filed before the High Court.
“This respondent’s consumption is less than one per cent of the total water permitted to be drawn by the SIPCOT from the Thamirabharani for industries at its industrial estates at Tirunelveli and Thoothukudi,” the counsel of the companies had argued in the court.
Both companies added that the water consumed by them put together is still lesser than water consumed by other companies in the SIPCOT at Gangaikondan.
South India Bottling Company added that petitioner D A Prabhakar, an advocate who earlier worked for the company, sought to accomplish personal vendetta.
Prabhakar had dismissed this argument saying he stopped working for the company because he did not agree with their policies.
The State government had permitted SIPCOT at Gangaikondan to draw 3 Million Gallons per day (MGD) of surface water from Thamirabharani for use by the units at the industrial growth centre.
According to an RTI filed by Chennai-based activist Ramiah Ariya from Arappor Iyakkam, 27 companies receive 0.5 MGD water.