We are reproducing below the open letter that Justice V R Krishna Iyer has written to Ms. Jayalalita, Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu state. Recent updates and articles on the ongoing anti-nuclear mass hunger-strike in Koodankulam  against can be accessed here

 

September 17, 2011

Madam Jayalalithaa,

I do not know you personally though have heard about you from my son’s wife who was a student in the school just a year below you.

I am convinced that my request is just. This I write with the responsibility of a successful judge of the Supreme Court of India for seven years. If you have trust in me and in my words, if your heart responds to the feelings of thousands of villagers at Koodankulam against the hazards of nuclear power, I plead with you on bended knees to judge sensitively to the appeal of the masses and show compassion and political wisdom without further delay. Please initiate without further delay a genuine dialogue with the people who are on hunger strike and consider their concerns. The non-violent struggle which enters 7th day needs your immediate intervention and due consideration. I feel that Tamil Nadu and South India as a whole will be indebted to you if you act at this juncture. I will also request to the movement to continue the Satyagraha without putting life of the people in danger and not resort to violence. I write this letter because I respect your integrity and kindness.

The facts of the case are enclosed herewith which I do not repeat. It is your fundamental duty to show compassion under Article 51A and alleviate distress and wipe every tear from every eye. Your kindness will be rewarded because there is divinity in your being and every acts of goodness will be reciprocated. Please don’t disappoint.

With regards,

Yours sincerely,

V.R. KRISHNA IYER

Encl : as above

To

Her Excellency Ms. J. Jayalalithaa
Hon’ble Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu
Poes Guardian
Chennai, Tamil Nadu

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Peoples Movement Against Nuclear Energy (PMANE)

Koodankulam

With the hunger strike crossing 6 days the situation of many of the 127 people on hunger strike in Indinthakarai is becoming more and more critical. More than 15000 people have been gathering every day for the past 6 days from 30 odd villages around Koodankulam from 3 districts Kanaykumari, Thoothukudi and Tirunelveli. The 127 fasting people are from all 3 districts. Doctors and nurse are monitoring them consistently. With the deteriorating health situation of some of the
fasters the doctors are concerned that some peoples condition could go beyond control if the fast continues and fasters are not heeding to the doctors advice. If such a situation arises then the crowd who are gathering in Idinthakarai and the people in the neighbouring villages and districts could turn violent. There is a huge battalion of police personnel around Idinthakarai and neighbouring villages. There is road blockage for around 20 kms and no shops are open also. For the fifth day in succession fishermen, farmers, manual laborers, merchants of the area did not go for their jobs while students continued to boycott schools and all shops remain closed for kilometers around Idinthakarai. No food is available for the people who are gathering for the protest and most of them who return to the villages and come back the next day are day fasting also. People are losing their patience. There are false cases against 500 odd people filed by the
police before the fasting started. Four people have also been put in jail.

Meanwhile the Chief Minster of Tamil Nadu and the Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited officials are trying to undermine the fat and protest by issuing press releases saying that the nuclear plant if safe even to factors beyond their control and understanding like natural disasters, accidents and terrorist attacks. On the 6th day of the fast no effort from the state or central government has happened with the fasters.

The concern of the people in terms of the impact on people in neighbouring places is nowhere addressed to by the state and central government. One just needs to go to Kalpakkam further North in Tamil Nadu itself to understand the impact that an operating nuclear plant could have on neighbouring places. Radiation exposure has been reported within the plant many times and plant staff exposed to radiation has died also. Since plant operations began in the early 1980s, incidents of cancer and auto-immune thyroid diseases in the surrounding villages have increased considerably and many people have died also. The whole nuclear operation by the government is held in secrecy and no worthwhile information is available in public domain. With the two 1000MW reactors nearing completion Koodamkulam is going to produce 5 times more power and resulting radiation compared.

In the mean time the protest is spreading to outside of Idnthakarai also. In neighboring Kanyakumari district some colleges had gone on strike. The local MP Helen Davidson’s house was picketed. The collector office in Kanaykumari was also picketed. Small protests happened in Chennai and Thoothukudi. From the neighboring villages of Koodankulam nuclear plant town ship where the staff of the plant including Russians stay the people mostly women have refused to go for work. The non violent protests that are happening is not being paid enough attention by the governments and they are playing with peoples emotions and patience.