Thousands of Indian farmers oppose planned Gujarat nuclear power plant
Farmers walk out of Gujarat nuclear plant public hearing Villagers refuse to part with their land for a 6,000MW nuclear plant which is expected to come up by 2022-23, Live Mint Maulik Pathak , Mar 05 2013.Ahmedabad: We will not give away our fertile land for the nuclear project. What will we do without our land? Where will we go?” asks Shaktisinh Gohil, village head and a farmer of Jasapara village in Bhavnagar district of Gujarat where state-run Nuclear Power Corp of India Ltd (NPCIL) plans to build a 6,000 megawatts (MW) nuclear power plant—the first after India and the US signed the civil nuclear agreement in 2008.
Gohil, who owns a mango orchard in the area known for its Sosiya variety, is among the thousands of villagers who walked out of the environmental public hearing on Tuesday, called by the district collectorate and the Gujarat State Pollution Control Board (GPCB).
In 2012, US-based Westinghouse Electric Co. Llc
and NPCIL signed an agreement for the construction work. The project, to be done in three stages, is expected to be completed by 2022-23.
Gohil says they had rejected the proposal of parting with their land a few years ago.
Since 2009, when the Indian government gave an in-principle approval to the Rs.50,000 crore Mithivirdi nuclear project, anti-nuclear activists and scientists have been distributing pamphlets and showing films on what happened at nuclear plants in Russia’s Chernobyl and Fukushima in Japan.Mithivirdi was chosen as a preferred site by NPCIL after consulting the state government, which decided to scrap its proposed port project at the same location.
Gohil alleges that the Tuesday hearing was on the basis of an environmental impact assessment (EIA) by Engineers India Ltd
, which did not have the necessary accreditation.
Even GPCB raised this issue about a month ago and had sought a clarification from NPCIL, according to a senior state government official…..
of Paryavaran Suraksha Samiti, a non-profit working on environment issues in Gujarat, said the public hearing committee did not give a chance to the villagers to raise their concerns.
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