PRIME MINISTER IS WRIGGLING IN THE DUNGEON OF DARKNESS OF
KUDANKULAM REACTOR SAFETY
Prof.T.Shivaji Rao, Director, Environmental Studies, GITAM University, Visakhapatnam.
[Source Terms for Fukushima Accident deduced by Experts]
[Source Terms for Fukushima Accident deduced by Experts]
During the British days we used to hate a Prime Ministers like Sir Winston Churchill who used to staunchly oppose the grant of freedom to India by his indecent statements like
"Power will go to rascals, rogues, freebooters…, All leaders will be of low caliber and men of straw…, They'll have sweet tongues & silly hearts…., They will fight amongst themselves for power and the two countries India and Pakistan will be lost in political squabbles…, A day would come when even air & water will be taxed."
Churchill could predict this because he could visualize what kind of political set-up, bureaucratic and Education system the Britishers are leaving behind them. After 65 years of Independence we are realizing that he made a true forecast of what was in store for the good people of a social welfare state. Mahatma Gandhi also had a vision of the Indian Administration and its impact on the health and welfare of millions of people in our democratic social welfare state.
1] Gandhiji and Indira Gandhi wanted the educated people to fight against social evils
In August 1947 when Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru was occupying the seat of power as Prime Minister Gandhiji warned us that “Today I am putting Nehruji on the thrown and I call him as the uncrowned Kind of India. He is a human being. To err is human. During the administration of this country he is likely to commit some mistakes of omission and commission and they must be corrected in the larger interests of the people of this country with a great heritage. Gandhiji questioned the people who gathered on the occasion “who will correct the mistakes being committed by Prime Minister? His Ministers will be embarrassed to correct such mistakes. His bureaucrats also will not come forward to correct such mistakes as obedient servants of the state. Then who will take the responsibility of correcting the mistakes made by a Prime Minister who himself declares “I feel proud that I am the first servant of the people”. Hence Gandhiji exhorted thus “It is YOU people of this great state who should unhesitatingly come forward to correct the mistakes committed by a Prime Minister and his office failing which you are unfit as responsible citizens of this great social welfare state for which thousands of patriotic people lost their lives and properties to liberate the holy motherland from the clutches of the despotic foreign rule.
Even a patriotic and Environmentally oriented Prime Minister like Mrs.Indira Gandhi fully grasped the evolving new forces bent upon making illegal money at any cost within shortest possible time are eagerly waiting for taking up development projects that provide tonnes and tonnes of corruption money by planning and executing them by violating the Environmental ethics and the United Nations slogan of Development without destruction. In order to safeguard public health and National interest she amended Article 51 A of the constitution by adding sub clause “g” stipulating that it is the fundamental duty of every citizen to protect the Environmental Assets like air and water resources, forests and wild life and to develop compassion for all creatures.
2) People must fight against wrong methods of development in preference to right methods:
Inspite of all these constitutional provisions the states and Central Government are violating the rules and regulations of the Environmental protection Act and thereby paving the way for growing ecological destruction and accelerating Environmental pollution that cause increased levels of mortality and morbidity, poverty, unemployment and social unrest which are the enemies of peace and national prosperity. Today the Prime Minister of India is on the path of committing mistakes in the administration by promoting national policies which are against national economy and public welfare and for this purpose he is under the pressure from vested interests like the business lobby the politicians and the bureaucrats who want to earn illegal money at any cost by taking up development projects through implementing of wrong methods that result in large scale health and economic losses in preference to the right methods of development that promote public health, national economy and sustainable development of the states and the nation. In order to illustrate how the state and central Government are promoting unproductive, suicidal and wrong methods of development in preference to right methods of development in the case of improper development of nuclear power plants can be taken as an example.
3) Debate on safety of nuclear power and its negligible contribution to national power needs:
Recently the Prime Minister without attempting to know the true facts about the safety of nuclear power and its negligible contribution for the total electrical power production in India he is trying to blame the NGO organizations who are showing their patriotic enthusiasm for safeguarding the public health and welfare against the onslaught of a killer nuclear power plant at Kudankulam which when exposed to an accident for one reason or the other is going to cause ruination of public health and natural resources resulting in economic losses worth more than Rs.4 lakh crores. The Prime Minister is thinking that Kudankulam nuclear plant is a holy cow and he does not know that the Shoreham Nuclear Power plant was closed down in USA just before it was likely to go into production of electricity for the reason that its functioning posed a threat to the lives of lakhs of people and their environment. The Prime Minister is ignorant of the fact that many nuclear plants in USA were closed due to their malfunctioning and he is blind to the fact that the Indiana Nuclear Power Plant near New York is opposed by several non-Government organizations and also the national nuclear regulatory authorities because it was found that it is not feasible to implement the emergency response systems and disaster management consequent to a potential nuclear plant accident like the one at Fukushima. Hence the contention of the nuclear plant promoters that nobody has a right to stop the operation of a completed nuclear reactor is highly wrong when people consider it as a threat to the lives and to the unique ecological systems over which they eke-out their livelihood. The Prime Minister and Nuclear authorities should not forget that the people have got a right to life, a right to health and livelihood. Infact the Prime Minister is kept in jails of darkness on nuclear safety by the vested interests in the atomic energy agency, the contractors, politicians and the officials who themselves are completely ignorant of what is meant by nuclear safety.
Prime Minister should realise that these concerns arose only after millions of Indians watched on their TV screens, the traumatic nuclear disaster at Fukushima last year which made the thinking Chancellor of Germany to confirm that nuclear safety is a myth after discussions with the experts and ordered for phasing out of all the reactors in Germany by resorting to implementation of alternative energy source. To brush aside such public concerns through a simplistic statement based on unscientific impressions and inappropriate briefing by DAE is to close one's eyes to the harsh reality of the most expensive and highly hazardous nuclear power and its inherent risks to mankind and natural ecological systems all over the world. To say that the minority that supports nuclear energy is the only “thinking segment” of the population is to belittle the inherent intellect of the majority of the society whose consent has not been taken for enacting an anti-peoples law on nuclear liability which is intended to help the foreign suppliers of nuclear reactors by transferring the economic burden of compensating the victims of a nuclear accident over the poor Indians whose consent has not been taken for such a major decision effecting their health and economy. This also amounts to belittle and blunt the voice of dissent in a democracy like ours.
The Prime Minister may have realised by now that the Fukushima accident has already cost the Japanese tax payer US$ 16 billion and the liability is likely to increase further in the coming months, whereas the Indian Civil Nuclear Liability law that has been enacted at his behest places a ceiling of only Rs.1,500 crores (equivalent to US$ 300 million) on what India can claim from the foreign reactor suppliers, in the event of a similar accident. The nuclear reactor suppliers in United States do not believe in the safety of their own reactors and hence are not in a position to convince the American Insurance companies to provide them with Insurance to cover the costs of paying the compensation to the victims of a nuclear accident and hence have influenced the US Government to legislate on Price-Anderson Act which pays to the victims about $12 billion as compensation and the US Government will ultimately have to pay additional amount from the national budget and thereby pass on the burden over to the heads of the poor tax payers. Thus when the nuclear safety is not believed by the very manufacturers how can any thinking Indian Prime Minister blindly believe the wrong advise being given to him by the ecologically illiterate experts of the Department of Atomic Energy on matters of nuclear safety as envisaged by the experts of the International Atomic Energy Agency. Without placing the detailed environmental impact analysis reports and the risk analysis reports of Kudankulam nuclear plant before the intellectuals and the general public of the region how can the Prime Minister blame that some vested interests are agitating against the nuclear plant while the concerned activists themselves are fighting for public safety to ensure their right to life and the right to livelihood which are being threatened by the ill-conceived location of hazardous major nuclear reactors in a vulnerable area around Kudankulam. The common people have abundant commonsense and hence they can rightly think what is a right method of development as distinguished by a wrong method of development that either contributes to their wellbeing or destroys their livelihood and they alone should make the proper choice.
4) Prime Ministers wrong assessment on energy contribution of Kudankulam reactors:
Prime Minister Dr.Manmohan Singh is highly wrong in stating that with regard to the Kudankulam plant NGOs, mostly based in the United States, don't appreciate the need for our country to increase the energy supply. Prime Minister is kept in ignorance by his ministers and officials who promote scams like the 2G spectrum for making money as they are not patriotic nor accountable to the people. If there are honest thinkers in his advisory group, they would have told him that the Energy needs are met to an extent of 64, 23, 10 and 3 percent are provided by Thermal, hydro-power, renewable and Nuclear power respectively and hence if we increase thermal power from 64 to 68 percent, we do not need Nuclear power at all as it is a highly risky and most costly option. Instead of importing nuclear reactors, we can as well import additional fossil fuels to protect public health and National economy.
Moreover the Nuclear power authorities are merely bluffing on the safety of Reactors inspite of the accidents in USA, Russia and Japan. People are right in fighting against Kudankulam as they have a right to life and right to livelihood which are bound to be affected by the Kudankulam reactors which are hazardous
5) Nuclear safety is not only reactor safety but also public safety as envisaged by the guidelines of the IAEA and npcil is ignorant of safety:
Nuclear Reactor safety is not only based primarily on proper design and construction of the nuclear plant including the engineered multi-layered safety features under the policy of defence indepth but also secondarily by demonstration of the proof in terms of the skills and abilities of the nuclear plant authorities and the local state government and panchayat institutions to not only chalk out but also implement the public health protection measures has contemplated by the emergency preparedness plans to be activated during the course of the travel of the radioactive plume caused by the accidental nuclear plant explosion..
Nuclear safety consists of firstly reactor safety secondly operational safety and thirdly Environmental safety. Public safety deals with Environmental safety that involves the preparation of an Environmental Impact Assessment reports including risk analysis, reactor accident scenario and Emergency Response and Management and Emergency Evacuation Drill which established the feasibility or failure of Emergency system as originally contemplated by the plant authorities as and the public whose lives and properties must be protected by providing the required measures of unfailing safety and security. Nuclear plant properties are propagating reactor safety only and do not speak on operational safety that deals with human failure as and they do not speak about Environmental safety that deals with human and animal populations and their properties as reflected by the Emergency Planning zones of the first order coming upto 16km and ingestion zone of the second order covering upto 80km from the reactor accident site. According to the principles of Nuclear safety stipulated by IAEA guidelines ten aspects of safety have to be fulfilled as formulated under the website. It is not feasible to implement even Environmental safety either the reactor sizes must be down graded or the location for the plant has to be changed after placing the EIA and Risk Analysis reports before the people for public hearing to suggestions from them. Since no hearing has been held as per rules. The plant cannot be permitted to be opened at all and it needs to be closed immediately without knowing these facts Prime Minister cannot propagate on safety of the plant and should scrap it at once.
6)Prime Ministers wrong views on energy and safety aspects of Kudankulam nuclear plant:
There are two crucial points that are worrying the Prime Minister on Kudankulam Nuclear plant crisis. The first doubt raised by the Prime Minister is to question that the NGO’s agitating against the Kudankulam plant do not appreciate the need of our country to increase energy supply. The second doubt of the Prime Minister is reflected in the words of Nuclear Energy promoter Dr.Kakodkar who said that it is strange that a large project ready for implementation (Kudankulam reactors) which has met all safety requirements even environmental and when the tremendous shortage of electricity. The country is development should become the hostage to anti-nuclear agitators under foreign influences. Even high school students who think naturally in national interest and the interests of their future generations will provide simple solutions to the above problems. Firstly all the people including the anti-nuclear activists do greatly appreciate the need of the country to increase its energy supplies. The only difference between the strategies to be followed for the purpose are based on right methods of energy supplies by the anti nuclear activists who present alternative energy sources while the nuclear proponents follow the wrong methods of power supplies by means of the killer nuclear plants which are not only very costly but are also highly risky as can be seen from the facts and figures and the websites. Today out of the total electricity produced by thermal, hydro-power, renewable sources and nuclear power respectively. Hence if only w increase the power production by increasing the use of thermal power generation, there is no need at all to use the most riskiest, highly expensive and environmentally destructive nuclear power plants. Hence the Government can follow the right in place of the wrong methods of development for producing more energy at the least cost. See websites:
7) Prime Minister must discuss with German Chancellor on myths of nuclear power:
Like a doubting Thomas the Prime Minister is half heartedly propagating that nuclear power is very safe but he is refusing to know the true facts on nuclear safety by discussing the subject matter with his counter- part the Chancellor of Angela Merkel who confirmed that safety of nuclear power is a myth and decided to phase-out all nuclear plants in Germany within the near future. The Prime Minister can also discuss with a patriotic Chief Minister like Mamata Banerjee to know that nuclear safety is a myth and hence she refused permission to locate a nuclear plant in West Bengal. The Prime Minister can also obtain detailed information on how the people of Andhra Pradesh were educated through mass media on the hazards of nuclear power plant proposed at Nagarjunasagar dam during 1990’s and how the anti-nuclear activists could stop the Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh and the Prime Minister of India to give up the proposed nuclear plant under these circumstances the Prime Minister must realize that in democracy it is the people that are the masters and not the selfish bureaucrats, politicians, contractors and officials who can dictate on what development projects promote public health and welfare and national economy and what projects results in public health and economic ruination of the states and country in the long run so one has to think twice before one takes to a blind leap.