Many us have been following the often shocking events unfolding in India as protesters at both the Koodankulam and Jaitapur nuclear sites have been brutalized by authorities. Meanwhile, government officials blame foreign interference and incitement by overseas NGOs. Nothing could be further than the truth, with challenges to the proposed Jaitapur reactors and the fuel loading at the Russian Koodankulam reactors led by prominent Indians such as Admiral Ramdas and S.P. Udayakumar. The latter's life was considered in such danger at Koodankulam that fellow protesters refused to allow him to volunteer for arrest. Thousands occupied the beach and many fled into the sea when police opened fire, killing one protester. Read more. And to participate in support of the Koodankulam protests, go here.
And here's a petition on AVAAZ to "Save the Koodankulam Protesters." Over 6,000 people face prison for their non-violent opposition to the Koodankulam nuclear plant in Tamil Nadu, India. Now, many of the protesters have commenced an indefinite hunger strike in a last-ditch attempt to save their freedom and stop the nuclear plant -- and only our added pressure can force the government to stop this illegal persecution of peaceful protesters.
The people protesting the Koodankulam Nuclear Power Plant in Tamil Nadu, India need our help like never before. This grassroots struggle started in the 1980s, and has gradually grown in the face of strong community opposition -- with about 10,000 people today actively resisting the imposition of the plant in their backyard.
The Fukushima disaster in Japan in 2011 provides unambiguous testimony of the dangers associated with nuclear power, and the Koodankulam plant has also been constructed in an area susceptible to earthquakes and tsunamis. But the struggle in Tamil Nadu is about something even greater than threat from a very dangerous technological dream. It is about the collapse of freedom in a country that has long claimed to be the world’s largest democracy in the tradition of Mahatma Gandhi.
Authorities imposed a blockade severely limiting access to food, water and electricity to many thousands of protesters. Mothers were forced to feed their babies sugar water as no milk was allowed into the village. Despite the non-violent nature of the protest, 6800 people have been charged with the serious crimes of sedition and/or waging war against the state, and formal complaints have been filed against many thousands more. The leaders of the movement have been falsely charged with attempted murder. This is not only a parody of law but a severe violation of the Indian Constitution, which the police and government have sworn to uphold.
On May 1, 2012, 25 protesters began an indefinite hunger strike as a final measure as the plant prepares to go online. On May 4th, an additional 300 women joined the indefinite strike. We need your urgent help to save these non-violent protesters from serious bodily harm and possibly death.
Please help by asking the officials of the Tamil Nadu and central Indian governments to drop all charges against these non-violent protesters and allow them to freely exercise their constitutional rights without punishment! Sign the petition now.
For more information please see: http://www.transcend.org/tms/2012/04/cases-against-koodankulam-protestors-a-parody-of-law-fact-finding-team/