Toxic Trade News / 14 May 2006
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GPCB denies entry to Blue Lady, awaits expert opinion
Following SC directive, Union Govt has directed Board to restrict ship from entering Indian jurisdiction
by Ahmedabad Newsline (India)
14 May 2006 (Ahmedabad) – The Gujarat Pollution Control Board (GPCB) on Sunday restricted former cruise liner S S Norway (Blue Lady) from entering Indian waters unless the committee of technical experts appointed by the Supreme Court gives its opinion on the further course of action to be taken.

The ship is in the eye of storm with environmentalists saying that it has hundreds of tonnes of toxic material on board.

Following the directive of the apex court, the Government of India has directed GPCB to direct all the concerned authorities that the ship should not be allowed to enter Indian jurisdiction, GPCB chairman K V Bhanujan said in a press release. All the Central and State government authorities have been informed accordingly, said the release.

Bhanujan said that the ship-owners, purchasers and all others who are directly or indirectly connected with the ship can make any submission before the technical committee appointed by the Supreme Court in this regard.

The ship from Malaysia was headed for Alang for dismantling when environmentalists raised an alarm saying that Indian yards lack the modern technology to handle such waste and it put the health of workers at risk.

The Supreme Court referred the matter to the expert panel to look into the working conditions in Alang.

The court set the next hearing for July when it will consider the evidences of the experts. Blue Lady was expected to enter Indian shores in late May.

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