"It is clarified that the CoWIN platform will be ready for 18+ beneficiaries by April 24, however, the registrations to book appointments (starting May 1) will begin only from April 28, 2021 (sic)," MyGovIndia said in a tweet.
In the wake of shortage of oxygen supply in the country and unabated rise in Covid-19 cases, mining firm Vedanta has filed a petition in Supreme Court to allow the company to reopen its controversial Tuticorin copper smelter plant to manufacture oxygen.
Appearing for Vedanta, senior advocate officer Harish Salve on Thursday said that if the Sterlite Copper plant in Thoothukudi (Tuticorin) is allowed to re-start, it can be utilised to meet the ongoing demand for medical oxygen. The Tamil Nadu government has opposed the plea while the apex court has agreed to hear the case on April 23, Friday.
Yesterday, in a letter to Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami, CEO Pankaj Kumar wrote that the company was keen to support the nation's needs and meet the rising demand for oxygen.
Kumar said that the Sterlite plant in Tuticorin contains two oxygen plants with a combined capacity of producing 1,000 tonnes of oxygen, daily. "We would like to offer these facilities for your use, towards ensuring that there is no lack of this viral commodity in the nation," he added.
He also requested the Tamil Nadu government to grant permission to re-start the plant but only to manufacture oxygen gas which it claimed "would be instrumental in supporting state government" amid the pandemic.
In 2018, the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board (TNPCB) had sealed the Tuticorin plant over allegations of releasing pollutants in its vicinity and in the wake of violent protests. While the National Green Tribunal (NGT) allowed the plant to resume operations in February 2019, the Supreme Court set aside the ruling. Subsequently. the company approached the Madras High Court. However, the high court upheld the pollution board's closure last year in August. After which Vedanta filed a petition in SC, claiming that "forces were conspiring against the nation' by keeping Sterlite Copper shut.