Danish ship must be driven out
Supreme Court panel for probe into illegal entry of toxic vessel
by The Hindu
29 May 2005 (New Delhi) – The Supreme Court Monitoring Committee (SCMC) has said that the Danish ship "Riky'' docked at a Gujarat port for dismantling, should be "mercilessly driven out of Indian sovereign territory without loss of time."
Responding to a complaint filed before the Monitoring Committee by Supreme Court lawyer Sanjay Parikh on behalf of Greenpeace, an environmental group, SCMC chairperson Gopalkrishnan Thyagarajan sought a full-fledged inquiry by a Central agency into the "illegal" entry of the ship into Indian waters.
In a letter to all SCMC members and the Gujarat Pollution Control Board, Mr. Thyagarajan said the SCMC was against "entertaining any interest in allowing the ship to stay for ship-breaking. It should go back to its source country, get decontaminated and thereafter seek return observing all rules and regulations of the Basel Convention as well as applicable rules of the Indian Government."
A formal order to this effect would be issued on June 2, a Greenpeace spokesperson said. "As far as SCMC is concerned, we take a serious and alarming view of the ship as fait accompli, which can have far reaching and adverse implications to India`s environmental care and concerns and international image," Mr. Thyagarajan said.
`Intention to cheat'
"The ship changing its name and arriving on Indian shore illegally clearly demonstrates its intention to cheat and deceive. Its arrival is in gross violation of the directives on ship breaking of the Supreme Court. The ship should not have been allowed to enter Indian territorial waters at all. The letter from the Danish Minister for the Environment cautioned India loudly and clearly. If the ship is considered hazardous by Denmark, the Basel Convention requires India also to treat it as such.
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