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PRESS RELEASE- Koodankulam leader barred from attending his father’s funeral by the police #WTFnews

Coalition for Nuclear Disarmament and Peace (CNDP)

Displaying Pushparayan.jpg

We express our sincere condolences at the sad demise of Mr. M Pushparayan’s father Mr. Mahiban Victoria. Pushparayan has been a leading activist of the people’s nonviolent struggle in Koodankulam against the ill-conceived and unsafe nuclear power project. It is heartbreaking to see Mr. Pushparayan not being able to attend his father’s last rites as he cannot move out of the Idinthakarai village, fearing immediate arrest by the police. It is shocking that over 200 police personnel were deployed at the funeral of Mr. Pushparayan’s father in Tuticorin to arrest him if he joins. Almost the entire village of Idinthakarai, which has been the centre of peaceful anti-nuclear protests, is declared criminal and people can’t move out.

Mr. Pushparayan, Dr. S P Udayakumar and the large number of people in Koodankulam have led a heroic struggle in highlighting the callousness of the Indian government towards the villagers’s lives and livelihoods. In response to their absolutely valid questions concerning safety, transparency and accountability of the nuclear establishment, the government unleashed brutal repression on people. The police has filed fictitious criminal charges as serious as sedition and war against the Indian state against hundreds of people. On several occasions in course of the agitation, the police resorted to brazen violence on innocent people including women and children.

Despite the order by the Supreme Court of India to take back false charges levelled against the people, the Tamil Nadu police and government have not complied. We demand that the criminal charges falsely leveled against participants of this consistently peaceful protest must be taken back immediately. We strongly condemn this continued violation of essential human rights of dissenting citizens in a democracy.

For CNDP,

Achin Vanaik
Lalita Ramdas
Abey George
P K Sundaram

Coalition for Nuclear Disarmament and Peace (CNDP)
124 A/6, Katwaria Sarai, New Delhi-110016
[email protected] | www.cndpindia.org | 9810556134

 

 

 

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CNDP Statement in Solidarity with the Anti-Nuclear Struggle in Chutka

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Say NO to Farcical EIA Hearings!

We congratulate the people of Chutka (Mandla district, Madhya Pradesh) for their vigilant and massive protest which has forced the government to cancel the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) public hearing for the second time. An earlier attempt to organise a farcical public hearing was thwarted by people’s resistance in May.

EIA hearings on nuclear projects have been reduced to a complete farce. Done by unaccredited agencies, the EIA reports do not look into radiation hazards at all and deliberately avoid crucial details and fudge data. Even such farcical reports are not shared with the people in their local language and EIA hearings are declared a success by the district administration despite massive popular protests at their venue. From Jaitapur to Gorakhpur and Rawatbhata, we have witnessed the same unacceptable pattern.

The People’s Charter on Nuclear Energy released recently in Ahmedabad at a national gathering of grassroots anti-nuclear movements has also brought the issue of farcical EIA hearings into focus.

We demand that the government revise and tighten the EIA hearing process substantially, While incorporating suggestions from independent environmental experts and social activists regarding both technical issues and transparency and democracy. Pending such revision, all EIA hearings should be put on hold.
For CNDP

Praful Bidwai
Achin Vanaik
Lalita Ramdas
Abey George
Kumar Sundaram

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CNDP Statement on Koodankulam Reaching Criticality

English: Internationally recognized symbol. De...

English: Internationally recognized symbol. Deutsch: Gefahrensymbol für Radioaktivität. Image:Radioactive.svg (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

In a shocking development, Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd has announced that the first nuclear reactor at Koodankulam in Tamil Nadu has reached criticality, or the beginning of a fission chain reaction.

This is an important step in the plant’s commissioning and towards making the fission process irreversible. But it violates the spirit of the Supreme Court’s May 6 order, which asked that NPCIL, the Atomic Energy Regulatory Board, Ministry of Environment and Forests and Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board “oversee each and every aspect of the matter, including the safety of the plant, impact on environment, quality of various components and systems in the plant before commissioning of the plant. A report to that effect be filed before this Court” prior to its commissioning.

Implicit in the order is not just the formal filing of such a report, but its perusal and approval by the Supreme Court. However, the agencies concerned merely filed the report in a sealed envelope, but the Court confirmed on July 15 that it has not even seen, let alone approve, the report.

This is part of a pattern followed by the nuclear establishment in cutting corners and bypassing essential procedures in matters of safety. It amounts to a breach of public trust, ans shows contempt for democratic and judicial processes.

The Koodankulam reactor was made critical despite the massive and sustained peaceful popular protests against the plant, and despite numerous warnings by nuclear experts, including former AERB chairman A Gopalakrishnan, about the plant’s vulnerability to hazards and the use of substandard equipment supplied by Russian company Zio-Podolsk.

This is profoundly anti-democratic and totally unacceptable. Ironically, the Koodankulam reactor reached criticality on the same day that China bowed to public protest by announcing the abandonment of a nuclear processing project in the Southeast.

We demand that the commissioning of the Koodankulam reactor be immediately halted and an independent safety review be initiated at the earliest into the plant.

The authorities must revoke the criminal charges filed against the protesters in Koodankulam with immediate effect in keeping with the Supreme Court’s order.

Achin Vanaik
Praful Bidwai
Lalita Ramdas
Abey George
P K Sundaram

 

 

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