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28 Aug 2012

Simon Goodley, Guardian [UK]

Protesters challenge Vedanta on human rights [India & UK]

Campaigners highlighting environmental and human rights breaches by...Vedanta Resources have been intimidated by police forces and subjected to trumped up charges...The allegations were made by...Amnesty International at the FTSE 100 group's annual meeting...An Amnesty report claimed: "An ongoing inquiry by India's Human Rights Commission [has found] that the police in both the framing of false charges and the suppression of dissent have acted to promote the interests of the company". Amnesty's Peter Frankental asked the meeting: "Do you take these findings and allegations seriously and what are you going to do about them?"...Vedanta non-executive director Naresh Chandra said: "Give us the information and we will have it investigated"...Standard Life Investments, which holds 9m Vedanta shares, said it would abstain on the re-election of members of the nominations committee because the board contained too few independent directors. Aviva said it was "pleased to note considerable progress...[while] concerns over the company's environmental and social record remain"...