28 February 2012
Under instructions from my client, Dr.S.P.Udayakumar, 27, Isanganvilai, Mani Veedhi, Parakkai Road Junction, Nagerkovil 629002, I address you as under:
My client was shocked to see a news item in The Hindu (City Edition : Chennai) dated 25 February 2012. The caption of the news item in the front page of The Hindu reads “Centre pulls the plug on three NGOs: Action follows PM’s statement that some US based NGOs are behind Kudankulam stir”. Paragraph 1 of the news item reads:
“Close on the heels of the publication of Prime Minister’s Manmohan Singh’s assertion in an interview in the latest issue of Science that some United States-based NGOs are behind the agitation against the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant, … …”
Your interview appeared in the online edition of “The Hindu” dated 24 February 2012 is noteworthy :
“Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has criticised non-governmental organisations that receive support from abroad for stalling the use of genetic engineering in agriculture and leading protests against the Kudankulam nuclear power plant in Tamil Nadu.
In an interview published in the latest issue of journal Science, Dr. Singh pointed to the potential of biotechnology, saying “in due course of time we must make use of genetic engineering technologies to increase the productivity of our agriculture.”
But controversies had arisen. “There are NGOs, often funded from the United States and the Scandinavian countries, which are not fully appreciative of the development challenges that our country faces.”
Then, referring to the protests at Kudankulam, he said: “the atomic energy programme has got into difficulties because these NGOs, mostly I think based in the United States, don’t appreciate the need for our country to increase the energy supply.”
Asked whether nuclear power had a role in India despite the Fukushima disaster in Japan, he said, “Yes, where India is concerned, yes. The thinking segment of our population certainly is supportive of nuclear energy.”
My client on seeing the above news items verified the veracity of the same with your interview published in “Science” (Vol 335 : 24 February 2012) under the caption “India’s Scholar-Prime Minister Aims for Inclusive Development”. Your interview runs thus:
“Q:Why did your government put a moratorium on the release of Bt brinjal?
M.S.:Biotechnology has enormous potential, and in due course of time we must make use of genetic engineering technologies to increase the productivity of our agriculture. But there are controversies. There are NGOs, often funded from the United States and the Scandinavian countries, which are not fully appreciative of the development challenges that our country faces. But we are a democracy, we are not like China.
You know, for example, what’s happening in Kudankulam [in southern India, where local NGO-led protests have stalled commissioning of two 1000-megawatt nuclear reactors]. The atomic energy program has got into difficulties because these NGOs, mostly I think based in the United States, don’t appreciate the need for our country to increase the energy supply.”
My client says that he is deeply hurt by your false statement that the atomic energy programme has got into difficulties because the NGOs, often funded from the United States and the Scandinavian countries, don’t appreciate the need for our country to increase the energy supply. This statement appears to have been made by you only with a view to informing the public that the protest against the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant in Tamil Nadu is going on with the assistance of the funds made available from the United States and the Scandinavian countries. There is no basis whatsoever for this statement made against my client who is the Coordinator of the protest.
My client states that you have made this false statement against my client with an intention to harm his reputation. The statements made in your interview amount to an imputation which directly, in the estimation of the members of the public, lowers the moral character of my client and also lowers the credit of my client. Your imputation that the said protest is funded by the United States and the Scandinavian countries is an utter falsehood. This imputation of yours may fall within the realm of ‘defamation’.
My client hopes that you, as the Prime Minister of India, will immediately make appropriate amends to the statements made against my client, and will not drive him to have recourse to law.
281 (Old No . 134) Thambu Chetty Street
Advocate Chennai 600 001
email [email protected]
- Udayakumar to sue Manmohan (thehindu.com)
- Manmohan Charges Western NGOs Unduly Influence Unthinking Classes To Fear Nuke Power and GM Food (therearenosunglasses.wordpress.com)
- Row over Manmohan’s anti-Kundankulam funding remark (thehindu.com)
- Well said Mr. Udaya Kumar … (tvaraj.wordpress.com)