Coke told to close Indian plant

Drinks giant Coca-Cola has been ordered to close one of its largest bottling plants in India for breaching environmental regulations.

Closure with immediate effect has been ordered by the Pollution Control Board of the southern state of Kerala.

The plant in the village of Plachimada is one of 27 that the soft drinks company has in India.

Coca Cola has long faced protests from the villagers who accused the US company of depleting local groundwater.

The Pollution Control Board said the factory, which bottles mineral water and soft drinks, had been unable to disclose the cadmium content of its waste.

The board issued a closure notice to Coca-Cola on Friday.

“We have been fighting for the closure of this plant for more than two years now,” said village council president A Krishnan.

“We are happy that the government is finally giving justice to the people who are affected by the plant.”

In January, activists in India held nationwide protests against multinational soft drink companies Coca-Cola and Pepsi.

Thousands of protesters gathered near manufacturing plants of the two firms and demanded that they stop production on concerns over groundwater depletion.

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