Jayanthi Natarajan said her ministry had nothing to do with Kudankulam project

While urging the Prime Minister to instruct officials to halt work on the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project, Chief Minister Jayalalithaa on Monday criticised Union Environment and Forest Minister Jayanthi Natarajan for stating that her ministry had nothing to do with the subject. In her letter to the Prime Minister, Ms. Jayalalithaa said the Union Minister had said the subject came under the purview of the Atomic Energy Commission and her Ministry had nothing to do with it. This amounted to “abdicating her duties as a Minister and absolving herself of any responsibility,” she said.

“Her remark that government officers would take care of the issue is callous in the extreme,” Ms. Jayalalithaa added.

Pointing out that the scope and magnitude of the issue was creating a fear psychosis among the people and villages surrounding Kudankulam, Ms Jayalalithaa expressed surprise that till date, no responsible Minister or higher authorities from the Union government visited the people or even attempted to assuage their misgivings.

In a statement issued in Tamil, the Chief Minister reiterated her call to the protesters to give up their fast immediately as she had taken steps in deference to the sentiments of people.

She also recalled that the 1,000-megawatt KNPP was formulated as a sequel to a bilateral agreement between India and Russia in 1988.