After seven months, protests begin again
Mumbai, November 23, 2011
After lying low for the last seven months, villagers opposing the
proposed Jaitapur Nuclear Power Plant in Ratnagiri district are set to up
their stir against the 9,900 MW project. On Tuesday, project-affected
villagers staged a peaceful protest outside the Bhagwati Temple in Madban,
few kilometers away from the project site. "Though the plant's
boundary wall has been built, we will not allow the gates to be fixed,"
said Pravin Gavankar, Madban resident.
Locals had stopped protesting after Tabrez Sayekar was killed in police
firing following violent protests in April. However, efforts have been on
in the last few months to mobilise people across the state to participate
in the opposition. There will be protests and a one-day fast outside the
district collector's office across the state on December 3 - also the day
of the Bhopal gas tragedy.
"December 3 is a day of protests against industrial disasters," said Vivek
Monteiro, social activist, who is a part of the Jaitapur Anuveej Prakalp
Virodhi Abhiyaan, an umbrella organisation of anti-nuclear groups
organising the protests.
Various gram panchayats in Ratnagiri will also pass resolutions, which will
be sent to the prime minister and CM. "The idea is to spread the propaganda
against building nuclear plants. Broader support will result in the
political price that the government will have to pay," said Monteiro.