Punjab govt deposits ₹5 crore with HC for failing to lift protest outside Ferozepur factory
A petition was filed in the Punjab and Haryana high court on behalf of Malbros International Private Limited, Ferozepur, alleging that there had been an indefinite protest outside their company due to which it was lying closed since July 26
The Punjab government has deposited ₹5 crore to the Punjab and Haryana high court registry amid the ongoing indefinite protest outside Malbros International Private Limited, an alcohol-making unit at Mansurwal village of Zira assembly segment in Ferozepur.
“In compliance with the order of the Punjab and Haryana high court to Punjab government, ₹5 crore has been deposited,” said Ferozepur deputy commissioner Amrit Singh.
A petition was filed in the Punjab and Haryana high court on behalf of Malbros International Private Limited, Ferozepur, alleging that there had been an indefinite protest outside their company due to which it was lying closed since July 26.
“The Punjab government had failed to lift the protest due to which they were incurring financial losses,” the company had stated.
It also argued that “no rules have been violated by them and they had environment clearance certificate and all other requisite documents”.
During a hearing on October 11, HC justice Vinod Bhardwaj had said, “It seems that the state has been soft peddling the entire issue. Despite the repeated assurances given and strenuous efforts made by the advocate general, Punjab, it does not seem to be making any headway despite the petitioners agitating and suffering immense losses including the pecuniary burden of having to meet the financial liability. In order to balance equities and ensure that conflicting interests are resolved, hearing of the case is adjourned to November 22. In the meanwhile, ₹5 crore will be deposited by the respondent state with the registry of this court within a period of one week.”
The local district administration had in the past asked the protesters sitting in front of factory to move 300 metres away from its main gate as ordered by the Punjab and Haryana high court or face consequences. They had also asked protesters to not obstruct the entry and exit points of the factory, but in vain.
“The administration has made several attempts to resolve the issue. After the protesters alleged that the groundwater was being polluted by the unit, resulting in spread of cancer among humans and deaths of animals, water samples were collected from six spots decided by the protesters. The NGT has stated that nothing was found in the water samples. But the protesters are not accepting the findings and remain adamant on shutting down the factory, which is unlawful,” said the deputy commissioner.
The plant is owned by former SAD MLA Deep Malhotra.