New Delhi: Accusing Shiv Sena Executive
President Uddhav Thackeray of a U-turn on Jaitapur nuclear
power plant, Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan
said he had backed the project but started singing a
different tune apparently after the Japan nuclear accident.
Addressing a press conference along with Union
Ministers V Narayanasamy and Jairam Ramesh, Chavan said that
Thackeray had met him along with a delegation and voiced
support for the Jaitapur project.
"I had detailed discussion with Uddhav Thackeray after
which he had agreed to support the Jaitapur project. I think
he took a different turn after Japan," Chavan said.
He steered clear of a question whether he would meet
Sena supremo Bal Thackeray in a bid to win back support of the
party which is the lone major political organisation in the
state opposing the project.
Ramesh took a dig at the Shiv Sena, saying the party
had declared to "drown" the Enron power plant in the Arabian
Sea in 1993 but gave the go-head to the project once it came
to power in 1995.
Chavan alleged that "outsiders" were instigating local
people at Jaitapur and the protests against the project were
based on "misconceptions and rumours".
"We appeal to all sections of society. We are prepared
to hold discussions with any group. Our doors are open," he
Chavan said he had made attempts to engage the civil
society by organising a meeting with experts in Mumbai and by
addressing public meetings in Madban and Sakhri Nate.
To a question, the Chief Minister said that even
social activist Anna Hazare had told him that he was in favour
of nuclear power.