NOC to explosives factory: Madras HC dismisses plea

Madurai
2 Mar 2017

The Madras High Court has dismissed a plea against an order cancelling a no-objection certificate given to an explosives factory near Tiruchirappalli following the death of 19 people in a fire that broke out last December. The plea was filed on behalf of the explosives factory near Tiruchirappalli. Dismissing the plea, Justice Ravichandra Babu said 19 people had died in the fire and the factory management could not do anything. Even the court won't be able to bring them back, the judge said, adding the question of natural justice would not apply in this case. Besides the no objection certificate (NOC) could be cancelled without issuing any notice on grounds including violation of rules and safety aspects, the judge said. "In many cases the court would have advised the parties to follow the principle of natural justice and given a hearing to the affected party before cancelling the NOC or licence. But in this case, 19 people had died and the principle of natural justice could not be followed," the order, issued last evening, said. The petitioner said the NOC was given to the factory functioning at Murungapatti in Turaiyur taluk in 1998. Based on the NOC, the licence was obtained which was renewed periodically and properly, the petitioner said. The fire broke out in the factory on December 1 last year, and the Controller of Explosives suspended the licence. The Tiruchirappalli District Revenue Divisional Officer (RDO) cancelled the NOC on December 17. The petitioner said the RDO did not seek their explanation before cancelling the NOC nor sent any notice. As the NOC had been cancelled, there was a possibility of licence also getting cancelled permanently, the petitioner said and sought a stay on the RDO's order besides quashing it.(PTI)