Victory Chemicals Caught Burning Hazwaste in its Compound; TNPCB calls it an "accident"

Cuddalore, 16 February 2009: SACEM monitors caught Victory Chemicals openly burning its hazardous waste within its compound today. According to SACEM monitors Victory was burning its waste openly in the morning. The monitors saw smoke emanating from behind the factory (on the banks of Uppanar) where its waste is usually piled up. They immediately alerted the TNPCB Assistant Environment Engineer (AEE) of the situation and demanded action. Later at about 3.30 pm the monitors found the company continuing to dispose their waste by burning them in the open. Once again the AEE was informed. As soon as the Victory officials noticed the presence of the monitors, they put out the fire. Later the TNPCB official through a phone call informed the monitors that the fire was accidental.

It is surprising to see the laxity of the TNPCB in taking action on errant officials in SIPCOT Cuddalore. While in this case alone we see the repeat nature of the offense the TNPCB continues to dismiss these matters as trivial instead of pulling up the company for their violation. Victory Chemicals has a history of violating the Hazardous Waste Management and Handling Rules. In 2004 they were caught red handed dumping tons of their hazardous waste in a village near SIPCOT. The unit is located on the banks of Uppanar without a valid CRZ clearance. TNPCB is yet to take any action on the unit for this violation.