Arrest Of Activists Near Koodankulam: HRF Appeal To TN Governor

Sri K Rosaiah
Governor of Tamil Nadu


Sub: Arrest of 11 persons of Andhra Pradesh, Jharkhand, Delhi, Tamil Nadu and Orissa in Koodankulam area – your intervention sought–regarding

The Human Rights Forum (HRF) urges your immediate intervention in the matter of the arrest by the Tamil Nadu police of 11 persons hailing from various States including three from Andhra Pradesh. We are very concerned about their safety and well-being.

The 11 were proceeding on a fact-finding mission to Idinthakarai and Koodankulam in Tirunelveli district of Tamil Nadu in respect of the ongoing situation in the area in the context of the movement against the Koodankulam nuclear plant and the State’s response to the agitation. They intended to meet and speak with residents opposed to the plant as well as State officials. The team members were proceeding in a bus when they were stopped by the police at the Nanguneri tollgate on October 12 and remanded to judicial custody. They have since sought and obtained bail and are in the process of furnishing sureties.

 Among those arrested are three citizens from Andhra Pradesh, all of them residents of Proddatur town in Kadapa district. They are P Varalakshmi a lecturer, Hameed, an employee of the Rayalaseema Thermal Power Plant and a post-graduate student Dastagiri.

The 11 were on an express mission to elicit facts from the local people as well as the administration. As you are aware, the decision to give the go-ahead to the nuclear plant has caused widespread dismay and has been viewed in many parts of the country as being an ill-informed decision. There is the perception that the government and the National Power Corporation of India Ltd (NPCIL) have not addressed all concerns raised by the anti-Koodakulam nuclear plant protesters.

The objective of the fact-finding team was to prepare a report based on their findings during the visit and put it out in the public domain. They had no intention whatsoever of disturbing public peace in the region. Given the considerable interest that the developments at the Koodankulam area have evinced all over the country, such a report would have been a useful democratic intervention. Their arrest has, however, put paid to this effort.

We earnestly urge you to intervene with the Tamil Nadu government and see that the cases against the 11 are dropped.

Yours truly

K Jayasree
HRF Kadapa district convenor


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