Refer to the link above to know the history of that copper smelting plant.
Traditionally known as “Pearl City” on account of the prevailing Pearl fish in the past in the area, Thoothukudi has a fascinating History. Thoothukudi became the citadel of freedom struggle in the early of the 20th century. It was in Thoothukudi that the illustrious patriot , V.O.Chidambaram established the first swadesi Stream Navigation Company, sailing the first steamer S.S.Gaelia to Thoothukudi on 1st June 1907.
Though it has many admirable things ,today it became more viral because of the sterlite issue.
As you said this copper smelting plant was not run in a sustainable way,
(see this video which has proof
for that,it is in our native language-Tamil,but subtitles can help you and it really shocks me if the data mentioned in the video are true)
And when we talk about industrial development, in developing countries there is a need for industrial development but I think too much of anything is good for nothing ,upto my knowledge Tuticorin is a small district and too much of industrial encroachment is not a good thing for both the humanity and the bio-diversity of that place.The following list shows the large scale enterprises in and around the city. Why is it necessary to built and allow to build these many industries in a small district.It might also be a major cause for the difficulty of the government to check whether it is functioning in a sustainable way.
One may tell that these industries boost employment opportunities but information prove that natives are not employed in a large scale there. Only outsiders are employed so that the exact issues happening inside are not conveyed out. Because it is a natural phenomena that only natives care for their land and for others it is just a news.
Here is a list of large scale sectors but there are also small scale industries and several others which are harming mother Earth in it's own way.
LARGE SCALE ENTERPRISES/PUBLIC SECTOR
1. Tuticorin Alkali Chemicals and Fertilizers Ltd. – Sulphates of Alumina ferric
2. Travancore Chemicals and Manufacturing Co. Ltd., harbor construction
Road,Tuticorin-Soda ash, heavy chemicals, ammonium chloride(fertilizer)
3. Dharangadara Chemical Works Ltd, Sahupuram, Arumuganeri,Tiruchenurt.k-
Caustic soda, liquid chlorine, Trichloroethylene, upgraded illuminate
4. The South India carbonic Gas Industries Ltd, Harbour construction
Road,Tuticorin Manufacturing of carbonic oxide
5. Southern Petrochemical Industries Corporation Ltd. (SPIC), Spic Nager,
6. Lakshmi Mills Co. Ltd., Lakhsmipuram Post, Kovilpatti- Textile yarn
7. Loyal Textile Mills Ltd 21/4 Mill Street, Kovilpatti-yarn and cloth
8. The Tuticorin Spinning Mills Ltd., 106, Playamkottai road, Tuticorin – cotton
yarn and thread
9. Madura Coats, Beach Road, Tuticorin. Cotton yarn and thread
10. Heavy Water Plant, Tuticorin –Heavy Water
11. Thoothukudi Thermal Power Station Tuticorin – Power
12. Sterlite Industries (India) Ltd, Madurai bye Pass road, Sipcot, Industrial
Complex, Tuticorin – Copper Smelting
13. The Bharathi Co-op. Spinning Mills Ltd., Ettayapuram
14. Shantha Marine Bio-Technologies (P) Ltd., Kallamozhi
15. Kilburn Chemicals Ltd., SIPCOT Complex, Tuticorin
16. Arasan Textile Mills (P) Ltd., Tuticorin
17. Transworld Garnet India (P) Ltd., Kootudankadu