You would think that after the massive 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami and last year’s nuclear calamity at Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi plant, Indian authorities might consider more closely the potential threats posed by the country’s many nuclear power plants.
But unlike some countries that have spurned the aggressive pursuit of nuclear power post-Fukushima, India presses on full speed ahead. Barely five months after the Fukushima disaster and despite serious concerns about India’s readiness for a similar accident, India’s Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said:
“there would be no looking back on nuclear energy. We are in the process of expanding our civil nuclear energy programme.”
Apparently, India is even prepared to imprison peaceful anti-nuclear protesters on false charges for their opposition. In the last few months, Dr. V. Pugazhendhi has been threatened by police with death and jail time for warning locals about the health dangers of radiation from a nuclear plant in Tamil Nadu.
And charges have been filed against leaders of the People’s Movement Against Nuclear Energy that include sedition and waging war against the state, which carry life sentences. Their crime? Peacefully protesting against India’s biggest nuclear plant.
These threats and charges are clearly intended to silence peaceful and legitimate opposition to these nuclear power plants. Tell the Indian government that even its critics must be protected and that their rights – as humans and Indian citizens – must be respected.