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Nuclear Issues

Press Release: Movement groups from Gujarat concerned about dilution of India’s nuclear liability act

PRESS RELEASE
DATE: 21 September 2013
· Bhavnagar Jilla Gram Bachao Samiti, Gujarat Anu-urja Mukti Andolan and Paryavaran Suraksha Samiti are shocked at the media reports that indicate Government of India’s (GOI) reported move to further dilute the Nuclear Liability Act to seal the nuclear deal with the US government.

· To register their strong protest affected people of Mithi Virdi, Jaspara, Mandva, Khadarpar and other 50 +villages have organised massive rally on 23 September 2013 from Mithi Virdi to Bhavnagar (40 Kms) and scheduled a meeting at Bhavnagar to register their protest.

Bhavnagar Jilla Gram Bachao Samiti, Gujarat Anu-urja Mukti Andolan andParyavaran Suraksha Samiti are shocked at the media reports that indicate Government of India’s (GOI) reported move to further dilute the Nuclear Liability Act to seal the nuclear deal with the US government. According to media reports the GOI’s note to the Cabinet Committee on Security sought to override nuclear liability for Westinghouse to seal a nuclear agreement with the US corporations during PM’s visit to Washington, undermining all democratic and sovereign institutions of India. The Government of India has yet to make its position clear on these media reports and also the opposition seems to share the same policy on the issue as ruling coalition which worries us further.

The dilution of the Nuclear Liability Act is being touted as a “gift” to the US Government and international nuclear corporations. We strongly condemn this brazen contempt for a adopted Act by the sovereign parliament of India. To assure the US Government and Nuclear Industries that the Government of India will make sure that the operator (NPCIL) does not use its ‘right of recourse’ against suppliers of defective equipments is a shameless sale out of Indian people’s lives. Earlier, the government tried to placate the nuclear corporations by diluting the Act by framing rules that go against the spirit of the Constitution of India.

To offer a liability playing field to the international nuclear corporations, whose constant decline has been greatly exacerbated by the setback after the Fukushima catastrophe, actually amounts to selling off Indian people’s lives and safety for nuclear profits. We have not forgotten the criminal record of ‘Union Carbide’s now Dow Chemical’ in the Bhopal gas tragedy and the shameless episode of Indian politicians letting the culprits goes Scott-free: both physically and in terms of adequate liability for the horrendous disaster.

The Indian government risking its citizen’s lives even as the crisis in Fukushima has further deepened over last few weeks exemplifies its callousness and the narrow elite interests that it represents. When Japan has been forced to switch off all its reactors and countries like Germany, Sweden, Switzerland, Italy etc have decided to go nuclear free, it is unfortunate that Indian Government is choosing to miss the historic opportunity to go for sustainable, renewable, decentralised and equitable forms of energy and shun nuclear power which contributes less than 3% of its electricity production.

We register our strong protest on any further dilution of the Nuclear Liability Act and endangering the lives of common people of India.

The Government of India is aggressively pursuing its nuclear programmes in spite of people from Koodankulam (Tamil Nadu), Jaitapur (Maharashtra), Mithi Virdi (Gujarat), Kovvada (Andhra Pradesh), Gorakhpur (Haryana), Chutka (Madhya Pradesh) and Haripur (West Bengal) waging relentless struggles against these anti-people and unsafe nuclear power projects promoted by the Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd (NPCIL). Their massive peaceful protests have mostly been met with callousness and brutal repression on the part of the governments. Communities near the existing nuclear facilities in Tarapur, Rawatbhata, Kalpakkam, Kaiga, Kakrapar and Hyderabad have also been raising voices against radiation leaks and their harmful effects, which are often hushed up by the authorities. Existing and proposed new uranium mines in Jharkhand, Andhra Pradesh and Meghalaya have also met with massive protests.

To register their strong protest affected people of Mithi Virdi, Jaspara, Mandva, Khadarpar and other 50 +villages have organised massive rally on 23 September 2013 from Mithi Virdi to Bhavnagar (40 Kms) and scheduled a meeting at Bhavnagar to register their protest.

Bhavnagar Jilla Gram Bachao Samiti – Shaktisinh Gohil Samjuben H Dabhi Arjanbhai Dabhi

Gujarat Anu-urja Mukti Andolan – Sagar Rabari Bharat Jambucha Damuben Modi

Paryavaran Suraksha Samiti – Rohit Prajapati Swati Desai Krishnakant

For details – Rohit Prajapati C/o – 09426977940, Krishnakant – 09427849310.

Stop Press: Prominent activists from various progressive groups in Gujarat are reaching Jaspara – Mithi Virdi to camp and join the protest rally.

 

About Intercultural Resources

Intercultural Resources is a forum for research and political intervention on issues related to the impacts and alternatives to destructive development. Our effort draws upon the social, cultural, material and intellectual resources that have been generated in the course of dialogues between people of different cultures on questions of social justice, development and self-rule. We are of the view that dialogue can sustain plurality and open possibilities for recovery of the ground lost on account of inter-cultural alienation, which is manifest in a variety of forms of violence that we encounter everyday at different levels of social life. Intercultural Resources is based in Delhi, India. Email: ihpindia@gmail.com

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