Massive rally by anti-Koodankulam protestors



Massive rally by anti-Koodankulam protestors Radhapuram: About 10,000 anti-nuclear protestors on Sunday took out a procession from a temple at nearby Koodankulam to this town and staged a peaceful demonstration, condemning Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's statement that the Nuclear Power project would be operationalised in a couple of weeks and resolved to picket the plant if work resumed.

Pushparayan, Convenor of People's Movement Against Nuclear Energy (PMANE), which is spearheading the stir, said the organisation would intensify its agitation from January 1 if their demand for removing the fuel rods loaded into the reactor were not removed by that date.

Police said the procession and the demonstration passed off peacefully and that adequate security had been deployed to ensure no untoward incidents took place.

Earlier in the day, PMANE condemned Singh's 'anti-people' and 'autocratic' statement on KNPP, saying it betrayed the fact that the state government's resolution to halt work was never honoured earnestly or implemented effectively.

PMANE also alleged that the Centre, Department of Atomic Energy, Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited and KNPP authorities had all been 'secretly' on loading fuel rods "against the letter and spirit of the cabinet resolution," in complete violatio of all Atomic Energy Regulatory Board rules and international regulations.

PMANE said it was regrettable that Singh had announced dates for commissioning the plant even as preliminary talks were on, "showing scant regard for dialogue."

The PM had said in Russia that the first reactor at Koodankulam would be operationalised in a couple of weeks and the second one in another six months.

On his way back from Moscow, he had made it clear that the Kudankulam reactor cannot be allowed to remain "idle" when the nation has sunk an amount of Rs 14,000 crore on the project.

PTI