‘Do not to allow new reactors’

Even as the first pour of concrete for the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project’s reactors 5 and 6 was conducted on Tuesday, the People’s Movement Against Nuclear Energy (PMANE) has appealed to the State Government to stop the expansion of the KKNPP by constructing new reactors.

In a petition submitted to Minister for Fisheries and Animal Husbandry Anita R. Radhakrishnan on Tuesday, its coordinator S.P. Udhayakumar said the KKNPP had “all of a sudden” conducted the first pour of concrete even as technical glitch hit the second reactor on multiple occasions in last May. Moreover, the first reactor had been stopped for “annual maintenance and fuel loading.”

While the reactors under operation were not performing well, there was no need for expansion by constructing more nuclear reactors in Koodankulam. The Union Government had planned to construct ‘Away From Reactor’ facility on KKNPP premises itself for storing the radioactive spent fuel.

“We protested against the KKNPP and the then AIADMK regime and the Union Government showed scant respect for our demands of permanent closure of nuclear reactors. People objected to the Chennai – Salem highway and hydrocarbon projects. But the people’s protests were crushed with force. The people are gradually losing their faith in democracy, which is not good for any democratically elected government. We’ll continue to resist these projects and continue our protest for our livelihood,” he said.

He clarified that their agitation was not against development but the implementation of new projects after wiping out the livelihood and peaceful life of common man.

“The power to be generated by the KKNPP reactors may last for next 40 years but the radiation from the reactors will never allow 400 generations to live in peace,” he said.

He thanked the minister for withdrawing the cases filed against the anti-nuclear protestors when the Idinthakarai-based anti-KKNPP protests were at the height in 2011.

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