The Supreme Court of India recently slapped a fine of Rs 10,000 on about 900 tanneries in Tamil Nadu for causing pollution in their surrounding areas. The tanneries would face closure if the fine is not deposited by October 31. The court also requested the Madras High Court to constitute a special 'green bench' and to settle matters relating to ecological and environmental degradation. It also directed the Central government to set up within a month an authority headed by a high court judge who would be empowered to order the closure of industries, impose fines on them and award damages.
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