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Adani Wind Power Project faces legal tussle in Sri Lanka Supreme Court

June 12, Colombo (LNW):Indian billionaire business Magnet Gautam Adani’s Mannar Wind Power Project has faced a legal tussle in Sri Lanka Supreme Court.  

Three eminent environmentalistsRohan Pethiyagoda, Prof. Nimal Gunatilleke, and Prof. Sarath Kotagama together with the Bishop of Mannar Rev. Fr. Bastian filed a fundamental rights petition (SCFR/167/2024) in the Supreme Court.

The case has been filed in the public interest, against the procurement and construction of the proposed 250 MW Mannar Wind Power Project in Mannar that is reported to have been awarded to Adani Green Energy PTE Ltd and/or Adani Green Energy S L Limited.

The case names 67 Respondents including the Cabinet of Ministers, the Sri Lanka Sustainable Energy Authority (SLSEA), the Central Environmental Authority, the Board of Investments, the Ceylon Electricity Board, the Public Utilities Commission Sri Lanka and the Hon. Attorney General among others.

The petition raises concerns regarding the credibility of Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) carried out in respect of the project, the role played by the SLSEA, raises certain procedural issues in the awarding of the purported contract, and questions the characterisation of the project as a Government-to-Government deal.

It also calls into question the basis for the negotiated tariff to be fixed at USD 8.26 cents per kilowatt-hour for a period of 20 years when the EIA conducts its assessment based on a cost of USD 4.6 cents, potentially causing considerable financial loss to the country and a burden on consumers.

In seeking their relief, the petitioners pray that the Supreme Court declare that there is a violation of the fundamental rights of the petitioners and citizenry at large, declare that the decisions made to award the project to Adani as wrongful, and calls for any consequential actions undertaken, to be declared illegal.

The petition states that the case has been filed to further the national interest, to preserve and protect public property, including the environment, flora and fauna, public finances and to safeguard the rights and freedoms of the general public of Sri Lanka and its future generations.

Adani Group plans to invest over USD 1 billion in setting up projects in Sri Lanka to generate electricity from wind in what would be the island nation’s single largest foreign direct investment and the biggest ever power project, sources said. Group firm Adani Green Energy Ltd (AGEL) will set up two wind farms in Sri Lanka’s Mannar town and Pooneryn village in the northern provide with a total installed capacity of 484 megawatt at an investment of about USD 740 million

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