The situation at Kudankulam has turned from worse to ugly. The state is determined to drown the three decade long peaceful protest in blood. Once the Chennai high court on 31st August, gave the green signal to fill the nuclear reactor with fuel, the valiant anti-nuclear fighters of Idinthakarai and surrounding villages decided to step up their struggle to a do or die battle.
Tens of thousands of people from the 18 villages surrounding Koodankulam whose livelihood will be affected the most by the Kudankulam nuclear plant, marched along the shores toward the nuclear plant on September 9th . They were stopped before 500 meters from the nuclear plant by armed policemen. 10 companies of police (4000 police men) with the task of breaking the will of the non-violent protesters have been pressed into service.
The protesting people comprising of women and children camped that night on the shores. They demanded the planned fuel loading in the reactor to be stopped immediately. They also demanded prohibitory orders imposed in the entire area for last several months be revoked, so that people from neighboring villages could visit them without fear and bring food and water.
At 10:30 am on September 10th, Police forces moved inside the siege area and also resorted to baton charge, which was resisted by people. A large riot-gear bedecked police force was in the front-line threatening the people and tear gas lobbers were on stand-by. Police continued to intimidate the people by moving closer, swaying batons. Officials even threatened with naval intervention.
Meanwhile in Various cities of Tamilnadu and Kerala solidarity protests were organised. In Chennai, the students of the Nandanam Government Arts College Spontaneously started a strike in support of the protestors who were facing the repression of the state machinery! Organisersers including Thirumurugan Gandhi of the May 17 Movement were arrested.
Around 12:00 pm at Kudankulam the Police attacked the protesters and beat them up and tear gas shells were lobbed. Hemmed in between armed police and the sea some jump into the sea. Sahaya Initha, the councilor of 13th ward, got severely injured. Several children fainted due to tear gas used by the police. Children who took shelter in the school were surrounded by police. 150 people have started a indefinite fast in St. Lourdes Church and nearly 2000 police have gathered intimidating them.
Media was not allowed to enter into the region and the media people who were already covering the incident were severely attacked by the police. Sathyam TV team at Kudankulam were thrown into the sea by policemen and Times of India reporter’s head was broken during the lathi charge. The camera man from TIMES NOW channel was beaten up so that the violence by the government would not be covered by the Press. All other reporters were chased away by the police.
At around 6:30 PM the police entered the Idinthakarai tsunami village. With the target of arresting PMANE leaders They went house by house search, vandalising and brutalising the women and children. The agitation has spread to near by districts also. In Tuticorin district, one person Antony Samy; Aged 40 was killed when police fired into a crowd of fishermen who were protesting against the nuclear plant.
The governments at the centre, state and the judiciary are hell bent on commissioning the monster killer Nuclear Plant come what may. It is a shame hat this country India calls itself a Democratic Republic with out an iota of respect for the peoples wishes and opinions.
The following organisations, New Socialist Alternative (CWI-India), May 17 Movement, Tamil Solidarity, Campaign to Reclaim Democracy, Karnataka Tamil Makkal Iyakkam (KTMI), Save Tamils Movement, Swabhimani Dalitha Shakthi, many other organisations and innumerable human rights activists,
- condemn the state terror unleashed on the peaceful protesters. We demand that the bloody siege at the Kudankulam be stopped forth with.
- We demand the immediate withdrawal of the police force and bring back the situation to normalcy.
- Stop harassment of activists who stand in solidarity with the villagers protesting against the Kudankulam nuclear plant.
- We demand that the government heed to the sane voice of the anti-nuclear movement and immediately stop the killer project of nuclearisation of India, which is bound put the people, flora and fauna, the fragile environment and the other species in irrevocable danger.