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Six Injured In Koodankulam Nuclear Plant Accident

By Countercurrents

14 May, 2014

Six workers were injured at Tamil Nadu's Koodankulam Nuclear Power Project (KNPP) on Wednesday. Three persons have suffered serious injuries and 3 minor injuries. All the injured have been admitted in the private hospital on the outskirts of Nagercoil. Sources from inside the plant report that at least three of the injured were contract workers and the other three were NPCIL staff. Reports also suggest that the accident happened in or around the boiler section of Unit 1, which reportedly attained criticality mid-year last year.

"Six workers were on some maintenance job when hot water spilled on them while working on a pipeline. They have been admitted to hospital. There is nothing to worry about their safety," R.S. Sundar, KNPP site director, told IANS over phone.

Nuclear Powere Coporation Of India Limited ( NPCIL) predictably denied the incident, and then began downplaying it, said a PMANE activist. Radiation accidents -- including the ingestion of tritiated water by NPCIL staff in Kaiga, and injuries in Rawatbhatta -- took months and even years to surface.

G. Sundarrajan, who had moved the Supreme Court against the commissioning of the plant, said: "Today's accident at the KNPP is an indication of the status of the project. The parts are third-rate and it is a warning message for the people of Tamil Nadu."

The very fact that the injured were taken all the way to Nagercoil which is 32 km away from Koodankukam and takes minimum one hour because of bad roads clearly proves that even the most basic Disaster Management requirement of medical care within 5 km of the KKNPP is absent. This means NPCIL and AERB have been committing perjury in the Supreme Court by filing false affidavits thereby inducing the Court to dismiss Sundar's petition. It is strange considering the fact that the injured were admitted to a private hospital as there is a Government Medical College in Nagercoil with a 400 bed hospital with all modern facilities.

The accident happened less than a week after the Hon'ble Supreme Court of India ruled that it is satisfied with the safety measures put in place in Koodankulam nuclear reactor.

The NPCIL is setting up two 1,000 MW atomic power plants with Russian technology in Koodankulam in Tirunelveli district around 650 km from here.



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