- September 14, 2012
- Posted by: admin
- Category: News
Stop the Fuelling of the Nuclear Power Plant!
DEFEND THE DEMOCRATIC RIGHT TO
PROTEST AGAINST NUCLEAR POWER!
We condemn the repression and violence unleashed by the government against the people of Koodankulam in Tamil Nadu, India who are peacefully protesting against the commissioning and fuelling of a nuclear power plant in the midst of their community which violates international safety standards. This large-scale nuclear power plant which the Indian government has been constructing in collaboration with Russian company Atomsroyexport, will have serious consequences for the life and ecology of the whole of peninsular India.
On September 10 2012, thousands of local people marched towards the Koodankulam Nuclear Power Plant, as all their attempts to engage in a dialogue with the government over the last year had failed. The government responded to this peaceful protest with police violence, using teargas and baton charges against the protestors, particularly targeting women, who have been at the forefront of the movement,and forcing people including the children into the sea. A 44-year old fisherman has been killed in police firing in another protest in Tuticorn, a young girl was trampled to death, and many were injured. Meanwhile police also attacked the village of Idinthakkarai which has been the centre of the movement, and in the absence of the residents broke into homes and their place of worship and ransacked and vandalised them. Since then mass arrests and police raids on villages have continued.
The events of the last few days are a culmination of repression and militarisation of the area, (which has also been a feature of other nuclear power projects in India in Jaitapur and Fatehabad), in which non-violent protesters are being intimidated, harassed, imprisoned, and falsely charged. From one police station alone, charges have been brought against more than 55,000 people including 8,000 for sedition and ‘war against the state’.
The people are currently appealing to the Indian Supreme Court against the Chennai High Court decision to authorise the loading of uranium fuel rods for operationalising the plant. Any attempt to go ahead with fuelling the plant at this point is therefore a violation of basic democratic rights.
The protesters at Koodankulam are urging that the construction be halted because:
- The construction violates the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Safety Guidelines as the Koodankulam is in a tsunami and earthquake prone region which has also experienced small volcanic eruptions and is affected by water shortages.
- It is in violation of the mandatory requirement for construction of fresh water reservoirs which are essential in case of a nuclear accident. This is significant, because fresh water is the only remedy in the event of a nuclear emergency. A main factor in all major accidents – such as at Three Mile Island, Chernobyl and Fukushima – was the lack of fresh water.
- Mandatory reports on the safety of the construction are being withheld from the public and the media.
- The violence and repression by police and paramilitaries against the people of Koodankulam must end
- The fuelling of the plant must be halted immediately
- Sedition and ‘war against the state’ cases against members of Koodankulam People’s Movement Against Nuclear Energy must be dropped and Section 144 lifted.
- International safety regulations for the nuclear plant must be followed.
- All reports, reviews and information related to the nuclear plant must be transparent and accessible to the public.
OIN THE INTERNATIONAL PROTESTS AGAINST THE KOODANKULAM NUCLEAR PLANT!
- Join the Koodankulam contingent at the Stop Hinkley events on Saturday October 6 – details http://stopnewnuclear.org.uk/
- Attend the Public Meeting ‘No More Nuclear Power Plants’ at the House of Commons on Thursday October 18, 6.30-8pm, Committee Room 6. More details soon at www.southasiasolidarity.org or contact firstname.lastname@example.org
- Sign the petition available at http://www.change.org/petitions/the-dangers-of-koodankulam-nuclear-reactors-in-south-india
- For further resources, see www.DiaNuke.org
NO MORE CHERNOBYLS! NO MORE FUKUSHIMAS!
NO NUCLEAR PLANT IN KOODANKULAM!
South Asia Solidarity Group and Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament