Coalition for Nuclear Disarmament and Peace (CNDP)
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.
P K Sundaram