The Indian Government has blocked the plans of Vedanta Resources to mine bauxite from the Niyamgiri hills sacred to local tribes.
The Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh announced that the company was violating environmental laws and so would not be allowed to mine in the area.
Prior approvals were rejected by the Minister for the aluminium refinery in Lanjigarh. The rejection has been a long time coming and will be seen as a drastic measure taken by the Indian government against the $1.7 billion operations of mining magnate Anil Agarwal in Orissa.
The Ministry of Environment and Forest has however given Mr Agarwal the opportunity to explain why his refinery unit should not be denied the right to expand its plant from one million tonnes per annum to six million tonnes per annum.
All these actions combined with the Petroleum Ministry’s bid to block Vedanta Resources’s acquisition of majority stake in Cairn India have left corporate circles abuzz.