Train Yatra from Kanyakumari to Kashmir: Campaign for ‘Nuclear-Free India’

Fight for Our Nature and Future

National Campaign for ‘Nuclear-Free India’

Train Yatra from Kanyakumari to Kashmir, November 7 to 17, 2014

Let us make it very clear at the outset that we are for the development of the country and all our peoples including the poor and oppressed. So we do support energy generating plans and projects.

We only say that let us generate required energy from renewable sources such as the Sun, wind, waves, wastes and so forth without spoiling our land, water, air, sea and sea food, cattle and crops etc. After all, food security, nutrition security, water security and air security are far more important than energy security.

But the Indian government wants to set up nuclear power parks (with six to ten plants) at so many locations all over India (Koodankulam and Kalpakkam, Tamil Nadu; Kovvada, Andhra Pradesh; Pati Sonapur, Odisha; Haripur, West Bengal; Kaiga, Karnataka; Jaitapur and Tarapur, Maharashtra; Mithi Virdi, Gujarat; Banswada, Rajasthan; Gorakhpur, Haryana; Chutka, Madhya Pradesh etc.) with the help of the United States, Russia, France, Japan, South Korea etc. The United States has not built a new nuclear plant in recent years. Japan has shut down all its 52 nuclear power plants after the Fukushima accident in March 2011. Germany has decided to phase out its nuclear power plants. Should India be the dumpsite of this discredited nuclear technology?

Indian government wants to import Uranium from Australia, Kazakhstan, Namibia and so on. But none of these countries has even one nuclear power plant there.

Nuclear energy is not cheap. Consider the land acquisition cost, long construction period and cost escalation, bribery and corruption, security costs, decommissioning, waste disposal and management etc. Every step in nuclear power generation is very expensive and the government subsidizes all of them.

Nuclear energy is not clean. Consider the enormous amount of steel, cement, oil and electricity used in nuclear power plant construction and operation. All these come from polluting sources. Nuclear plants leave huge amounts of dangerous wastes that threaten us with radiation for 48,000 years. What will the government do with all this waste? Where will they store them in a crowded country?

Nuclear energy is not safe. India being a highly and densely populated country, even a small incident in a nuclear plant may have disastrous consequences for millions of our people. See the people of Bhopal who have suffered an industrial disaster. Even after 30 long years of several governments, chief ministers and prime ministers, the people there are left helpless without compensation, medical assistance or waste removal.

Nuclear energy is not healthy. Nuclear power plants dump enormous amounts of hot and mildly radioactive coolant water into the sea or river 24×7. That affects the seafood and groundwater. The nuclear plants emit radioactive iodine, cesium, strontium, tellurium etc into the air. All this may cause pregnancy-related problems, birth defects in children, radiation illnesses, cancers and so on.

Nuclear energy is not moral. What moral legitimacy do we have to spoil the Nature and the futures of our children and grandchildren just because we get electricity for 40 years and our political parties and leaders get huge amounts of commission from foreign countries and their nuclear corporations?

Nuclear energy is not the answer. Nuclear energy is not the answer for global warming as it uses so much carbon-producing energy. Nuclear energy poisons our Earth with deadly wastes. Nuclear power makes up only 2% of our electricity generation and may never be significant in the near future.

Should we lose our socioeconomic and political independence in the name of energy independence? Should we behave like slaves and recolonize our country all over again? Or should we think like leaders and solve our problems with originality and creativity?

As Mahatma Gandhi said: “The earth, the air, the land and the water are not an inheritance from our fore fathers but on loan from our children. So we have to handover to them at least as it was handed over to us.”

Come, let us strive for a ‘Nuclear-Free India’ that has No Deals, No Mines, No Reactors, No Dumps, and No Bombs.

People’s Movement Against Nuclear Energy (PMANE)
Idinthakarai 627 104
Tirunelveli District
Tamil Nadu
Email: [email protected]

Kanyakumari to Kashmir

  • sridhara

    I am glad to see the opening remark that you are not against development. Is development possible without banking on N-energy is the question. This is equivalent to a student saying the he was not against going to school but he was insisting to study in Doon school if not in US.

    I fully agree that Nuclear energy has potent dangers. The scare is understandable. Every progressive step has its shadow. Millions die in road accidents. But we do not ban vehicles. We try to search methods to reduce. The N-reactor technology now available is much more safer than what the US, Japan, Germany etc are operating.

    N-energy is not cheap. Renewable energies cost just 5 times more! Can we develop at that cost?

    Comparing us with developed nations is not proper. They hardly increase power generation by 5% every year. This can easily be met by renewable sources without substantial increased costs. But now we have very limited expose to the dangers / disadvantages of Solar power and wind power. Can you say when these are tapped at mass scale what happens? Depending on such sources is equivalent to asking farmers to depend on rains but not on irrigation canals (after all dams are bad in several ways).

    Germany decided to phaseout N-plants. Till then they decided to get exposed to dangers of existing N-power plants.
    Japan has not closed down its N-plants as said by you. They are in operation. Many plants were shut down for evaluation and are brought in to operation. Their future plans for N-power were also suspended but not terminated.

    Australia could not build N-plants due to opposition by people. But the opposition is slowly phasing out. They are for cheap energy costs. In a decade it shall have N-plants to meet their energy needs.

    Australia, Kazakhstan, Namibia may not yet need N-plants but they still mine Uranium? Do you accept mining of Uranium in India?

    The way you accuse about bribes / commissions in N-plants, they also accuse you all of finance from foreign sources to obstruct development. Well corruption along with development may be a better option than corruption to prevent development.

    Our development shall be within our means.