Denying the allegation that the NGO run by him had received funds from the U.S. and Scandinavian countries, People's Movement against Nuclear Energy (PMANE) convener S.P. Udayakumar on Saturday said that he would file a defamation suit against Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for insinuating that foreign funds were used to organise protests against the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project (KKNPP).
Talking to reporters, Mr. Udayakumar said though he was on the experts' panel of Reconciliation Resource Network attached to the Sweden-based Institute of Democratic and Electoral Alliance (IDEA), he had nothing to do with money transactions.
Mr. Udayakumar's clarification came in the wake of a reply he had received from Union Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs, V. Narayanasamy, informing him that IDEA-India, a Tamil Nadu-based NGO, had received Rs.30.1 lakh from IDEA headquarters between 2006-07 and 2010-2011. Similarly, IDEA-India had received Rs.5.54 crore from non-IDEA sources.
Narayanasamy sends reply
Mr. Narayanasamy sent the reply after Mr. Udayakumar threatened to sue him for the allegations that the NGO run by him had received funds. He stated that Mr. Udayakumar and his wife Meena, the trustees of SACCER, an NGO, had registered with IDEA's Reconciliation Resource Network as its organisation.
“I don't know whether the Prime Minister was referring to it when he was talking about anti-Kudankulam protesters receiving funds from the U.S. and Scandinavian countries. Since I am the convener of the movement, I assume these allegations are against me and I have decided to file a defamation suit against the Prime Minister,” said Mr. Udayakumar.
He expressed the hope that Chief Minister Jayalalithaa would stand by the local people in their struggle against the Kudankulam project. “In the beginning, she expressed her solidarity with the local people. She has now advocated the use of compact fluorescent lamps (CFL) to save energy. She has also announced a thermal power project in Udankudi as an alternative to nuclear power. This makes us to presume that she is against the KKNPP.”