First, a ban was announced. Then, it was effected. Now, it has been lifted within a day.
Yes, the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu cannot make up its mind on how to deal with international beverage-makers Pepsi and Coca-Cola that were accused of exploiting ground water resources.
The ban, which was effective on March 1, has been revoked by the Madras High Court which found that there was sufficient water in the river and only the surplus was being channeled for commercial purposes, the Times of India reports.
In January, the Tamil Nadu traders’ association announced that it would stop selling soft drinks manufactured by MNCs including Pepsi and Coke from March 1 and promote local beverages instead. Six thousand affiliated member associations agreed to the decision.
The issue dates back to 2015 when protests had broken out in the rural town of Tirunelveli in Tamil Nadu, where farmers raised an alarm against Pepsi’s new plant. The company had reportedly been given sanction to draw more than 1 million liters of water each day from the nearby Tamirabarani River.
With Tamirabarani being the only perennial water source for farmers in the region, it would have halted agriculture had it gone dry.
After the movement gained enough momentum online with petitions on Change.org, the Madras High Court in November 2016 granted an interim injunction restraining both PepsiCo and Coca Cola from drawing water from the river.
Now that the ban has been lifted, Coke and Pepsi can breathe easy.
Indians on social media are conflicted about the matter though.
Funny..they will ban coke and pepsi but they wont ban Tasmac…these guys..god..
— Balaji (@hbalajirao) March 1, 2017