Growing protests across India to support anti-nuclear struggle in Koodankulam

[हिंदी] Growing protests across the country have strengthened the call against nuclear power in India. Activists of the National Alliance of People's Movements (NAPM), Coalition for Nuclear Disarmament and Peace (CNDP) and Lok Rajniti Manch, are organising a protest and fast from 26 March 2012 till 1st April 2012, at Jantar Mantar, New Delhi, in solidarity with ongoing fast by activists of the anti-nuclear movement at Idinthakarai, Tamil Nadu against the Koodankulam nuclear power plant. Social activist and Magsaysay Awardee Dr Sandeep Pandey is sitting on a seven day fast.

In Chennai too people are fasting in support of anti-nuclear movement in Koodankulam. In Mumbai, noted film-maker Anand Patwardhan is leading a protest in front of Dadar Railway Station. 
On 27th March, 2012, one day fasts will be organised at many places in support of the local people protesting against the Koodankulam nuclear power plant.

It is ironical that India has raised the issue of atrocities on Tamil people in Sri Lanka at the United Nations Human Rights Commission (UNHRC) but is not relenting its nuclear power pursuit which potentially puts its own Tamil people at grave risk of nuclear tragedy in times to come.

"We strongly condemn the undemocratic manner in which nuclear energy is forced upon us. Not only Indian government has used a strong hand to snub the People’s Movement Against Nuclear Energy (PMANE) in Koodankulam, Tamil Nadu, but also is trying to intimidate and stifle resistance by misleading allegations of a ‘foreign hand’. Dr Udayakumar who leads PMANE has declared his personal assets and he has no FCRA account to receive foreign money. Whereas it is clear that Indian government is working hands-in-glove with bigger ‘foreign hands’ of USA, Russia and other countries in its joint military operations and expanding nuclear programme" said Dr Sandeep Pandey, who did his PhD in control theory applicable in missile technology from University of California, Berkeley.

"The latest attempt by the CM of Tamil Nadu to brand S.P. Udayakumar as a naxal clearly shows the desperation of the government. We condemn such underhand tactics and attempts by government to mislead general public" added Dr Pandey.

It is the people in Europe and America that have forced their governments by coming out in large numbers on street to abandon nuclear energy. But Indian government is trying to stifle such people’s initiatives to have their say. Our claims of being the largest democracy prove to be hollow.

Recent nuclear emergency in Japan leaves no doubt that this world needs to renounce nuclear power for military and civil/ energy purposes, as soon as possible, to put an end to any further catastrophe in the name of 'energy', 'security' or 'technology'. Nuclear power is clearly the most dangerous options for civil or military use. Countries that have been using nuclear power such as Germany have resolved to abandon nuclear energy by 2022. Japan, USA, and many such nations who were earlier pursuing nuclear energy option are having second thoughts now.

We believe that India should adopt the futuristic energy policy like Japan and the European Union (EU) relying on renewable sources of energy which are non-polluting. Like EU and Japan, India too should aim for a low-carbon energy production system. India’s future energy policy should be low carbon and no nuclear.

Said Dr Pandey: "We appeal to the Indian government to support dialogue on nuclear energy in a democratic way and until there is a consensus on whether India should go ahead with nuclear programme or not, should stall all nuclear programmes."

Bobby Ramakant - CNS

Published in:
Citizen News Service(CNS),India/Thailand, Accra, Ghana
Elites TV News, California, USA

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