Kudankulam citizens to appeal to Japan PM against nuclear cooperation

Last Updated: Wed, Dec 28, 2011 06:50 hrs

Chennai, Dec 28 (IANS) Senior citizens of Kudankulam in Tamil Nadu's Tirunelveli district will be sending an appeal to the visiting Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda not to revive civil nuclear cooperation with India, said an anti-nuclear energy activist.

'We are in the process of mobilising senior citizens to sign the appeal which will be sent sometime today,' M. Pushparayan, convenor of the Coastal People's Federation and a leader of People's Movement Against Nuclear Energy (PMANE) that is fighting against the setting up of the 2000 MW atomic power plant at Kudankulam, around 650 km from here.

The anti-nuclear power activists do not see any change in the attitude of the Tamil Nadu government towards the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project (KNPP) after Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa's Sunday meeting with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh here.

Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda is on a two-day visit to India. The two countries are expected to sign a series of agreements including in the nuclear field.

'As the only country in the world to have suffered radiation from nuclear bombs and nuclear power plants, Japan must take a lead in saving humanity from the nuclear menace and not try to make money out of the deadly nuclear business,' the letter states.

The text of the letter was shared with IANS by S.P. Udayakumar, coordinator of PMANE.

'While you yourself are struggling to contain the damages of the Fukushima disaster, you have no moral legitimacy to sell this dangerous technology to other countries. Hence we request you not to revive the civil nuclear cooperation negotiations with India,' the letter notes.

Queried about the memorandum submitted by Jayalalithaa to Manmohan Singh Sunday, Pushparayan said: 'She has asked the centre for funds for wind energy which shows that the chief minister is focused on renewable energy to bridge the power deficit faced by the people.'

Nuclear Power Corp of India Ltd (NPCIL) is building two 1,000 MW atomic power reactors at Kudankulam, at an outlay of Rs.13,171 crore.

The first unit was slated to be commissioned in December. But protests by villagers over safety concerns stalled all project-related activities.

The Tamil Nadu cabinet has urged the central government to stop all work at the project site till the fears are allayed.

Jayalalithaa, in her memorandum to Manmohan Singh citing the delay in the commissioning of the KNPP and Neyveli Lignite Corporation Ltd's 500 MW project, has asked for additional allocation of 1,000 MW from the central pool.

The chief minister also sought 75 percent power from the two joint sector power projects under construction and allocation of long term coal supplies to three thermal power projects planned in the state.

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