Below is a statement signed by some eminent Indians, opposing the farcical EIA hearing underway in Gorakhpur, Haryana. Please endorse the statement by commenting below this post.

“We condemn the undemocratic and farcical manner in which the authorities in Haryana are conducting the important public hearing on the environmental impacts of the proposed Gorakhpur Nuclear Power Plant (GNPP) on 17th July 2012.

This public hearing is an important step under the MOEF guidelines to provide an opportunity to the project affected people to raise their objections. According to the rules, the local people should be given the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) report 1 month prior to the public hearing. The EIA report should be translated in the local language and must be distributed freely to the village bodies and concerned individuals of the area.

However, the people of 6 panchayats in Fatehabad districts who will be affected by this project have not received the copies of the EIA so far. While the notice for the EIA hearing was sent to the village panchayats (elected local governance bodies) on June 16th, 2012, the EIA report was made available by the Haryana State Pollution Control Board’s regional office to the District Collector (DC) of Fatehabad only on 6th July. To some social activists and concerned individuals, soft-copies of a 14-page executive summary (Download) of the report was provided, that too only in English.

The villagers are supposed to learn English, educate themselves in the technical details of the EIA, decipher the concealing and misleading tactics invariably adopted in such reports and raise their objections – without copies of the document under discussion ! Meanwhile, the media has reported about preparations for heavy police and paramilitary presence on the day of public hearing.

We condemn this brazen violation of MoEF rules and basic norms of democracy and transparency. Independent experts and popular movements have questioned the safety, viability and relevance of nuclear energy at many places across India and the world.

We demand that the public hearing in Haryana must be postponed with immediate effect, and should be conducted in free, fair and fearless atmosphere after providing the entire report to the people 1 month in advance.”

With best regards,

Vandana Shiva

Medha Patkar

Praful Bidwai

Achin vanaik

Capt J Rama Rao

V T Padmanabhan

EAS Sarma

Surendra Gadekar

Sanghamitra Gadekar

Sandeep Pandey

Soumya Dutta

Kumar Sundaram

Madhuresh Kumar

Panini Anand