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Polluters must pay and will pay: Jairam

Special Correspondent

NEW DELHI: The government on Tuesday assured the Rajya Sabha that fishermen who could not carry on with their vocation after the August 7 Mumbai oil spill would be given compensation after the impact on them was assessed.

A study of the environmental impact was also being undertaken.

“Polluters must pay and polluters will pay,” Minister of State for Environment and Forests Jairam Ramesh said in response to a short notice question by Rajiv Pratap Rudy (BJP) on the oil spill caused by the collision between Panamanian ships MSC Chitra and m.v. Khalijia-III in the Arabian Sea off the Mumbai coast.

Leakage was reported from MSC Chitra, which had 2662 tonnes of heavy oil in various tanks and 245 tanks of diesel oil.

Mr. Ramesh said his Ministry was supporting studies ordered by the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board, which has asked the Central Marine Fisheries Institute to study the impact of the oil spill on fish and the National Environmental Engineering Research Agency, Nagpur, and the National Institute of Oceanography, Goa, to carry out an environmental impact assessment.

The report on the impact on fishermen would be available in two weeks, he said.

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