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20,000 Villagers Occupy Koodankulam Nuclear Power PlantJoseph John Sunder Special to Salem-News.com
Includes timeline of events unfolding in India.
(CHENNAI Countercurrents) - More than 20,000 villagers have put the Koodankulam nuclear power plant under siege to protest fuel loading in preparation for the commissioning of the plant. More than 4000 police personnel, including Rapid Action Force (RAF), are deployed around the plant. People are camping in front of the nuclear plant and refuse to go back to their homes.
Here are the days events as it happened -
7 am: Idindakarai is peaceful and calm, more than 5000 from nearby villages arrived by boat and foot. IDK is getting ready for Sunday Mass. March to save mankind is expected to start at 9am
8.30am: Crowd building up in front of St. Lourds church, IDK started joining people come from other parts. Instructions are announced to advise people behave orderly.
9.20am: March expected to start around 10am, huge crowd presence in front of the church, Kuthankuzhi in full strength, representation from other villages are also seen. IDK is till joining, March route is not known, people are expecting SPU’s word on that.
9.45am: Huge crowed build up, people pouring in from all villages, Youth committee meeting underway to advice on crowd control, March is expected to start after Benediction service.
10.30 am: Benediction is underway, people still coming up, hence bit of a delay in starting the march, March expected to start anytime.
11.00am: S P Udayakumar is speaking, marching is starting, SPU will lead the march, people will follow him, the march will follow the “தேர்” route in IDK and head towards KNPP.
11.20am : Around 30000 people started marching, one the way many people expected to join the way. Udayakumar, Pushparayan, MAIPA and Milton leading the march, followed by children, women, then followed up people. Another prayer expected in St. Xavier’s church in west, then head towards KNPP.
11.40am: March reaching few feets away from KNPP east side wall, huge crowd follows Udayakumar, people very well received the idea of the location, very hot weather, sea breeze give little comfort, we will have one leg always sea, our mother.
11.50am: KNPP east compound wall: Marched stopped for a while to gather/accumulate all the people walking, police also reaching the site. Looks like SPU may address the crowd for further action.
12.15pm: KNPP east compound wall: Marched stopped, people are just 100feet way from police, people wait for SPU’s command. People are asked to sit in seashore. People still joining. Weather make it hard, hope Govt , political and religious leaders respond soon
12.50 pm KNPP east compound wall: More than 25000 people are on seashore, just 50 meters away from plant wall, around 3000 police men/women are put to control the ground. People are behaving orderly, well in control of SPU, SPU among the crowd, location is not enough to accommodate 25000+, so facing hardship , hot weather, but all aware this suffering is to save the generation. Let Politicians and official not underestimate people, all future plans are well wrapped secret.
1.10 pm: KNPP east compound wall: Kudankulam people started joining the protest; police seems to be losing grip on inland, making it easy for Kudankulam to join the protest, hope and pray more and more people join to the feast to stop KNPP.
1.30pm : KNPP east compound wall: High tide, please losing the shore, weather is improving. Large crowd continue to build, one end as at east wall and other end is at Idindakari west Thundil Paalam. People are supplied with water. Kudankulam keep joining, this is the time for others to join.
2.15PM: KNPP east compound wall: High tide, waves raising so as people, number keep growing, hot sun makes people look for shades, only water supply so far, efforts are on to supply food parcels. Supply and logistic are next big issue. Another Mullaivaikal in making. News of Collector in site looking for SPU for talk but people demand that Officials should talk to people.
3.15PM: KNPP east compound wall: Arrangements are made to make temporary shelters, may be to make toilets for women. Lunch parcels are under preparation, Weather make it tough. Police bring some vehicle indicates preparations for arrest, people are on high alert.
4.45 PM: KNPP east compound wall: Police strength reduced moved to KNPP front gate. Looks like Govt. started its dirty game, not to care about people, make them suffer for days, it become the tactics of Govts, in various recent protests. Govt. expects violence to end this protest. Make the people lose hope and suffer. Their strategy will not work with us, we have nothing to lose, Govts and educated elite can give up Gandhian thoughts, but we poor are not, we still believe in non-violence. We appeal all to step up the pressure to make Govt respond. We are poor and helpless, we fear about our livelihood being lost, please support us.
See more photos here
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