Chennai: Slammed by Tamil Nadu Chief
Minister Jayalalithaa for the stalemate over the Koodankulam
Nuclear Power Project issue, the Centre on Tuesday said an expert
group is likely to be set up this week after Prime Minister
Manmohan Singh returns from his overseas trip.
Hours after Jayalalithaa accused the Centre of "inaction"
and blamed it for the impasse, Minister of State in the PMO V
Narayanaswamy said the Centre would also seek the "guidance"
of former president APJ Abdul Kalam on ways to dispel the
apprehensions of the people over the KNPP project.
"The Centre`s expert group, comprising scientists from
the environment, nuclear and ocean fields, will be set up
after the Prime Minister`s return from South Africa. It will
be a neutral body and there will not be any representative
from the Atomic Energy Commission," Naryanaswamy told a news agency from
Dr Singh would return from South Africa tomorrow and the
group is expected to be set up this week, he said after
Jayalalithaa issued a strongly worded statement accusing the
Centre of doing little to allay the fears of locals who have
again launched their agitation against the project.
Jalayalithaa took exception to Narayanaswamy`s statement
that the Centre was still awaiting the state government`s
response on composition of the expert committee, which the
Prime Minister had promised to send to allay the fears of the
locals, causing delay.
Describing Narayanaswamy`s remarks as "a deliberate
attempt to put the blame on the state government", she said
the Minister, sent as an emissary of the Prime Minister to
meet the agitators, had not taken any steps to allay their