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Kattupalli port expansion, Chennai, India

Locals protest against the Kattupalli Port expansion by Adani in Tamil Nadu which would severely destroy land, livelihoods and traditions of the region, were finally successful.


The Kattupalli port, near Chennai, which commenced operations in 2012 was originally owned by L&T (Larsen and Toubro) and acquired by Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone Ltd. (APSEZ) in 2018 with a plan for adding 40 million metric ton of new capacity in the next three years [1]. APSEZ, India´s largest private port developer, acquired 97% stake in Marine Infrastructure Developers Pvt. Ltd. (MIDPL), the developer and operator of Kattupalli port for Rs. 1,950 crores (US$ 26 billions approx) [2]. Located 30 km towards north of Chennai, the Kattupalli Port is one of the most modern ports in the country which provides connectivity with the hinterland of north Tamil Nadu, Chennai, the Bengaluru region and south Andhra Pradesh [3].

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Basic Data
Name of conflict:Kattupalli port expansion, Chennai, India
State or province:Tamil Nadu
Location of conflict:Kattupalli village, near Ennore, Chennai
Accuracy of locationHIGH (Local level)
Source of Conflict
Type of conflict. 1st level:Fossil Fuels and Climate Justice/Energy
Type of conflict. 2nd level:Ports and airport projects
Land acquisition conflicts
Specific commodities:Coal
Project Details and Actors
Project details

Currently, Kattupalli handles only containers from two berths with quay length of 710 meters, 6 quay cranes, 15 rubber-tyred gantry cranes, 5120 ground slots with the capacity to handle 1.2 million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) per annum.

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Project area:2,472
Level of Investment for the conflictive project7,162,600,000
Type of populationRural
Affected Population:50,000
Start of the conflict:01/01/2019
Company names or state enterprises:Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone Limited from India
Adani Group from India
Relevant government actors:Ministry of Environment and Forest (MoEF)
Environmental justice organizations (and other supporters) and their websites, if available:Save Ennore Creek campaign, Concerned Youth for People
Conflict & Mobilization
IntensityHIGH (widespread, mass mobilization, violence, arrests, etc...)
Reaction stagePREVENTIVE resistance (precautionary phase)
Groups mobilizing:Farmers
Indigenous groups or traditional communities
Local ejos
Landless peasants
Local government/political parties
Local scientists/professionals
Fisher people
Forms of mobilization:Community-based participative research (popular epidemiology studies, etc..)
Creation of alternative reports/knowledge
Development of a network/collective action
Media based activism/alternative media
Objections to the EIA
Official complaint letters and petitions
Street protest/marches
A food festival with local fish, prawn and crabs which would be lost due to the port expansion.
Environmental ImpactsPotential: Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity), Floods (river, coastal, mudflow), Food insecurity (crop damage), Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Soil contamination, Groundwater pollution or depletion, Reduced ecological / hydrological connectivity
Health ImpactsPotential: Occupational disease and accidents
Socio-economical ImpactsPotential: Displacement, Loss of livelihood, Loss of traditional knowledge/practices/cultures
Project StatusStopped
Conflict outcome / response:Strengthening of participation
Project cancelled
Do you consider this an environmental justice success? Was environmental justice served?:Yes
Briefly explain:Due to the protests, by March 2021 the expansion project was scrapped permanently [15].
Sources & Materials
Juridical relevant texts related to the conflict (laws, legislations, EIAs, etc)

Revised Master Plant Development of Kattupalli Port
[click to view]

4. Leah Thomas and Abhinaya Harigovind. Kattupalli Port expansion plan: fishermen, farmers fear loss of livelihood. The Hindu. August 4 2019.
[click to view]

5. Activists raise their voice against Kattupalli port expansion. The Hindu. August 1 2019.
[click to view]

7. Neelambaran A. Expansion of the port claimed that the ToR had been granted based on incomplete report. NewsClick November 2 2019.
[click to view]

3. Adani group acquired 97% stake in Kattupalli Port. The Statesman. 28 June 2018
[click to view]

Rohan Chakravarti. Cartoon about the Pulicat fisherfolk´s innovative protest against the port expansion by organising a sea food festival to show all that will be lost if the port expands.
[click to view]

6. Neelambaran, A. The proposed expansion covers ecologically sensitive areas; may damage Ennore creek, Pulicat Lake and livelihood of around residents of 45 villages. NewsClick. June 6 2019
[click to view]

1. Anand, N. Adani port acquires Kattupalli Port. The Hindu. 28 June 2018.
[click to view]

2. Press release from Adani Port about the acquisition of Kattupalli Port
[click to view]

8. Jairam Ramesh raises Kattupalli Port project in Parliament and protests against it. Times of India. July 16 2019.
[click to view]

9. Residents of Pulicat protest port project with sea food. Deccan Herald. January 29 2020.
[click to view]

10. Jayarajan Sreedevi. Fisherwomen from a Tamil Nadu town use food to fight Adani’s port expansion. The News Minute. January 24, 2020.
[click to view]

11. Manoj P. Adani Ports to pump Rs53, 000 cr to expand capacity of Kattupalli Port. The Hindu Business Line. March 4 2019.
[click to view]

13. Omjasvin, M D. Fishermen up in arms against Adani port expansion at Pulicat. The New Indian Express. October 31 2019
[click to view]

14. Nityanand Jayaraman, Illegal and Unnecessary - but Adani Port Proposal makes it to Public Hearing Stage. Science. The Wire. 16 Jan. 2021.
[click to view]

15. Will scrap Kattupalli port expansion project, says OPS. The New Indian Express, 19 March 2021.
[click to view]

Meta information
Contributor:Brototi Roy
Last update02/07/2023
Conflict ID:4973
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