The Tamil Nadu Cabinet on Thursday passed a resolution urging the Centre to halt the work on the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project (KKNPP) until the fears of local population over the safety of the plants are allayed.
The Cabinet resolution was in line with the assurance given by Chief Minister Jayalalithaa to the anti-Kudankulam protesters on Wednesday, when their representatives called on her.
‘Struggle to continue'
Tirunelveli Staff Reporter adds:
Though the 12-day fast by the protesters came to an end on Thursday following assurances by Ms. Jayalalithaa, they have vowed to intensify their struggle against the Union government in the days to come.
Bishop of Tuticorin Roman Catholic Diocese Rt. Rev. Yvon Ambroise, who came to the protest venue at 10.30 a.m., explained in detail the demands put forth during their meeting with Ms. Jayalalithaa in Chennai on Wednesday.
“We urged the Chief Minister that the State Cabinet pass a resolution demanding the permanent closure of the KKNPP and appealed to her to withdraw cases against some of the protesters during the agitation. We also appealed to her to draw a comprehensive alternative energy policy, which should ensure tapping of non-conventional energy sources at the optimum level so that the environment and people living near such power generation units do not get affected. Since the Chief Minister's replies satisfied us to the maximum possible extent, we agreed to withdraw the ongoing indefinite fast,” In his address, coordinator of the agitation, S.P. Udhayakumar said representatives of non-governmental organisations, social activists, anti-nuke groups and community leaders would participate in a meeting to be held in Madurai on September 25 to decide on the future course of action against nuclear programmes in the country.
He informed that a protest against the KKNPP would be held at Samithoppu in Kanyakumari district on October 2 under the leadership of Swamy Balaprajapathi. “We'll even lay siege to the KKNPP in the near future to ensure its permanent closure,” he said.
The protesters left the venue only after after the Cabinet passed the resolution. However, the sprawling pandal erected for the protest is yet to be dismantled.
“It will be there till the Union government gives a satisfying reply to our demands. If not, the pandal will come in handy for us again,” said S.V. Antony, president, Uvari panchayat.