VAL closes Lanjigarh refinery

Bhubaneswar: Future of nearly 7,000 workers hang in balance with the closure of Vedanta Aluminium Ltd’s (VAL) one million tonne Lanjigarh alumina refinery in Kalahandi district on Wednesday.

The company began the closure process with the stoppage of production in the plant and diversion of waste materials to the ash ponds.

In September the mining conglomerate had given a closure notice to the Odisha government citing shortage of bauxite as the primary reason for the shutdown.

According to an official for last several months, the company had been running the plant at lower capacities and incurring losses.

Sources said the mining conglomerate has invested Rs 50,000 crore in the refinery alongwith an aluminium smelter of 1.5 mtpa and a captive power plant.

In November Vedanta group chairman Anil Agrawal and VAL’s Managing Director S K Roongta had called on Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik to seek an alternate supply arrangement of bauxite.