Koodankulam: Notice to NPCIL and Tirunelveli District Collector

M. Radhakrishnan 281 (Old No . 134) Thambu Chetty Street
Advocate Chennai 600 001
mobile 9791096510
email lawtomorrow@yahoo.com
28 March 2012

1) The Chairman
Atomic Energy Regulatory Board
Niyamak Bhavan
Mumbai 400 094

2) The District Collector
Tirunelveli District


Under instructions from my client, Mr.P.Sundararajan, Advocate, No.1.P, Pandu Klix Plaza, 330/168, Thambu Chetty Street, Chennai. 600 001 I address you as under:

1) Today’s press report (Deccan Chronicle, Chennai Edition 28 March 2012) says that Mr.S.A.Bharadwaj, Director Technical, Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited had made an announcement to the public that “Koodankulam Nuclear Power Plant is ready for fuel loading and the process will commence soon after Atomic Energy Regulatory Board gives its nod”.

2) Rule 33 (4) of the Atomic Energy (Radiation Protection) Rules, 2004 reads : “(4) In respect of radiation installations governed by clause (a) of sub-rule (3) of rule 3 and clause (b) of sub-rule (3) of rule 3, emergency response plan shall be submitted to the competent authority prior to the commissioning of the installations. The competent authority is Atomic Energy Regulatory Board.

3) According to Mr.S.A.Bharadwaj, the Atomic Energy Regulatory Board is yet to approve the Emergency Response Plan. The Atomic Energy Regulatory Board is yet to examine the emergency response plan in respect of Koodankulam Nuclear Power Plant in the light of Article 16 of National Report to the Convention on Nuclear Safety published in August 2010. Clause 16.1.3 is categorical to the effect that the Emergency Response Plans of the Plant Management include the action plans which would be invoked in the event of an emergency and that before the commencement of operation of a nuclear power plant, the plant management should ensure that the emergency preparedness and response plan for NPP are drawn up and approval of AERB is obtained, and necessary training is imparted to the personnel in implementing the action plans and the implementability of the plans is confirmed by conducting exercises. This clause also provides that the Plant Management has the responsibility to ensure that an updated Emergency Response Plan exists and that the emergency preparedness is maintained.

4) AERB safety guidelines No. AERB/SG/EP-2 issued in October 1999, relating to Off-site Emergency Preparedness Plans for Nuclear Installations says that the District Collector would be designated as Off-site Emergency Director who will have adequate authority to control and coordinate all offsite emergency actions in the public domain.

5) The Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited vide its letter No.NPCIL/VSB/CPIO/HQs/2008/301 dated September 16, 2008 addressed to Dr.S.P.Udayakumar made it clear that the agreed finalized off-site emergency preparedness plan would be tested by conducting an exercise before any unit of KKNPP commences operation and the same would be done with close coordination between district authorities and KKNPP authorities. The letter also says that this is a mandatory requirement of AERB.

6) The Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited has vide its recent letter dated 28.10.2011 (Ref: NPCIL/KKNPP/MECH/2011/S/2466) addressed to M/s Reliance Engineering Services, KKNPP Site office, Koodankulam stated that in the area beyond the exclusion zone of the plant it is the responsibility of district administration to provide relief to the population and hence the decision of emergency shelters etc. will be decided by them, based on requirement and as prescribed in the emergency preparedness manual.

7) Kindly take notice that neither the emergency preparedness plan has so far been approved by the Atomic Energy Regulatory Board nor has the district collector been duly informed about any such approval. Kindly also take notice that the Approved Emergency Preparedness Plan and the consequential action as detailed in the Approved Emergency Preparedness Plan should exist before the second stage of commissioning viz. fuel loading of the reactor core commences in Koodankulam Nuclear Power Plant.

8 ) Kindly take further notice that commencement of the second stage of commissioning the Koodankulam Nuclear Power Plant without there being Approved Emergency Preparedness Plan would be contrary to the provisions of the Atomic Energy Act, 1962 and the Atomic Energy (Radiation Protection) Rules, 2004 and would consequently be violative of Articles 14 and 21 of the Constitution. It is hoped that you will act according to law and you will not drive my client to approach the Hon’ble High Court of Judicature at Madras for issuance of a WRIT OF MANDAMUS directing you to discharge your public duty strictly in accordance with the provisions of the said Act and the Rules in respect of Koodankulam Nuclear Power Plant.





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