Supreme Court of India refuses to ban asbestos, calls for adequate regulation and chastises NGO's link to competitive products

MONTREAL, Feb. 1 /CNW Telbec/ - The consortium of international investors that wants to buy Jeffrey mine in Asbestos, Quebec and increase chrysotile exports to developing countries salutes the landmark decision by the Supreme Court of India that refused to ban asbestos and  directed the Union and State Governments of India  to put in place a body to regulate its use and manufacturing. 

The Court also chastised the petitioner for abusing the law saying that the Writ Petition is not in public interest but is rather a private interest litigation to give rise to business opportunities for competitive products. (par 24)

Regulate rather than ban

The Supreme Court was petitioned by an NGO  who asked it to ban all uses of asbestos in any manner whatsoever.  The Court refused to do so, on the grounds of "lack of specific data as well as vague averments in the Writ petition" (par. 12). 

"What is required is better supervision and regulatory control rather than banning of the activity," the Court writes. (par.12)

"This judgment by the highest tribunal in India confirms that our project of exporting Quebec's expertise in the safe handling of chrysotile asbestos along with our product is the right one," says Baljit Chadha, head of the consortium of investors. 

Links between the anti-chrysotile lobby and rival business interests

The judgment describes how rival business interests disguised themselves as a public interest NGO: "the present petition lacks bona fide, is an abuse of the process of the Court and has been filed as a proxy litigation for the purpose of achieving private interest." (par.27)

Consequently, the Court has issued notice to the petitioner "to show cause why proceedings under the Contempt of Courts act, 1971 be not initiated against them and/or in addition, why exemplary cost be not imposed upon them."(par. 29)

"We are used to seeing the anti-chrysotile activists trying to moralize or shame people on the basis of incomplete science and half-truths.  And we have known for a long time of the links between them and some of the manufacturers of competing products.  The Supreme Court of India has now openly stated this," concludes Mr. Chadha.

The judgment can be found on the website of the Supreme Court of India: ..  It is dated January 21, 2011 and the name of the petitioner is: Kalyaneshwari. 


For further information:


Guy Versailles APR
(514) 744 2142 OR (514) 386 9774

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