Mangaluru, May 07, 2015: Protest march was held by the Nagarika Horata Samiti, Jokatte and members of other local social organisations also joined in. Samiti convenor B.S. Hussain said that residents of Jokatte and neighbouring areas continued to suffer from the stench and the black soot dust from the two units. Residents of Jokatte and activists marched to the MRPL - Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals Limited, main gate demanding the closure of the coke and sulphur recovery units for the alleged violation of pollution norms.
B S. Hussain blamed the refinery squarely for continuing to violate the laws laid down by the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB). It had improved for a few days but has drastically increased now.
Activist Vijay Kumar Shetty asked protesters to strongly continue with their demonstrations for the protection of their land, water and air. He said in case of illegal detentions we will fight for the cause. Shetty pointed at DK DC Adoor.B. Ibrahim for his inaction regarding the concerns expressed by residents. Democratic Youth Federation of India’s State secretary Muneer Katipalla said that they would not allow the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board to renew the licence for the refinery to run the coke and sulphur recovery units due in July 2015.
KSPCB chairman Vaman Acharya and other members checked a presentation made by the refinery about pollution measures carried out at the two units. The presentation was done following two notices by the board pointing short comings in pollution control measures.
It is reported that MRPL officials talked about measures, including creating a fog-like condition around the coke silos to prevent ash from flying. They also talked about the use of high-capacity vacuum cleaners at the coke and sulphur yards to remove residues in the area. All has been only talk and assurance but nothing has solved the basic problems of the residents.