The State government must ensure that the police drop the charges filed against the residents of Sadurangapattinam village and other neighbouring villages, who protested with against the Kalpakkam Nuclear power plant management on March 25 and 26, a fact-finding committee of citizens submitted to the media on Wednesday.
The committee comprising academicians and scientists from the city – Professor A.Marx, P.Sivakumar, former principal and member of People’s Movement Against Nuclear Energy scientists panel, Professor M.Thirumavalavan and social activist V.Srinivasan, among others – visited the villages on March 28 and April 1, and in a report submitted to the media reiterated that any criticism of the nuclear establishment could not be construed as anti-national.
They noted that the five-point charter of demands of the villagers in and around Kalpakkam nuclear power plant was reasonable. Their demands include a 24-hour uninterrupted power supply just as Kalpakkam township received, contract jobs to people from nearby villages on a priority basis, no further nuclear plants in the Kalpakkam region, placements in schools run by the nuclear establishment to displaced villagers and a super-speciality hospital with focus on nuclear oncology.
“It may be that the recent protests at Kudankulam had spurred them,” Prof A.Marx said. “But they are well within their rights to demand what they want, and as long as they hold protests in a peaceful manner there should not be a problem. There has been a global concern on nuclear power plants ever since the Fukushima nuclear plant accident and it is the duty of the nuclear establishment to allay fears.”
The fact-finding committee said there was growing concern that nuclear waste from the Kudankulam nuclear power plant, once it attains criticality, would be brought to Kalpakkam for re-processing. Foisting cases against them was wrong, the committee said. They also condemned the police for the lathi charge on peaceful protesters.