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Koodankulam Leader Barred From Attending His Father’s Funeral

By Coalition For Nuclear Disarmament And Peace

14 December, 2013
Cndpindia.org

Koodankulam anti-nuclear struggle leader M Pushparayan was prevented from attending his father's funeral, who passed away on 12 th December. Pushparayan had not met his father from the beginning of the anti-nuclear struggle about two years ago. Pushparayan's father Mahiban Victoria ( 85), passed away in Tuticorn about 80 kilometers from Idinthankarai, where Pushparayan is staying and leading the struggle against Koodankulam Nuclear Power plant. Pushparayan could not attend his father's last rites as he cannot move out of the Idinthakarai village, fearing immediate arrest by the police. Over 200 police personnel were deployed at the funeral of Mr. Pushparayan's father in Tuticorin to arrest him if he joins. This state 'terrorism' against the leader of the peaceful Koodankulam anti-nuclear struggle was employed in spite of the order by the Supreme Court of India to take back false charges levelled against the people,. The Tamil Nadu police and government have not complied with this order

Photographs By Amirthraj Stephen

On the night of December 12 , Mr Pushparayan woke up and broke down emotionally. Mr Pushparayan has not met his father for around 2 years ( from the time of beginning of protests). He was crying loud in distress about his inability to participate in the funeral

Mr Pushparayan got to see his dad's body via Facebook. Thanks to the friends from Tuticorin who uploaded the images from Mr Pushparayan's home.

Mr Pushparayan breaks down with tears as soon as he saw the body of his father kept in a freezer .

Mr Pusparayan watching the final journey of his father. With the help of friends and activist, the whole funeral was shown to him via videoconferencing.

We express our sincere condolences at the sad demise of Mr. M Pushparayan’s father Mr. Mahiban Victoria. Pushparayan has been a leading activist of the people’s nonviolent struggle in Koodankulam against the ill-conceived and unsafe nuclear power project. It is heartbreaking to see Mr. Pushparayan not being able to attend his father’s last rites as he cannot move out of the Idinthakarai village, fearing immediate arrest by the police. It is shocking that over 200 police personnel were deployed at the funeral of Mr. Pushparayan’s father in Tuticorin to arrest him if he joins. Almost the entire village of Idinthakarai, which has been the centre of peaceful anti-nuclear protests, is declared criminal and people can’t move out.

Mr. Pushparayan, Dr. S P Udayakumar and the large number of people in Koodankulam have led a heroic struggle in highlighting the callousness of the Indian government towards the villagers’s lives and livelihoods. In response to their absolutely valid questions concerning safety, transparency and accountability of the nuclear establishment, the government unleashed brutal repression on people. The police has filed fictitious criminal charges as serious as sedition and war against the Indian state against hundreds of people. On several occasions in course of the agitation, the police resorted to brazen violence on innocent people including women and children.

Despite the order by the Supreme Court of India to take back false charges levelled against the people, the Tamil Nadu police and government have not complied. We demand that the criminal charges falsely leveled against participants of this consistently peaceful protest must be taken back immediately. We strongly condemn this continued violation of essential human rights of dissenting citizens in a democracy.

For CNDP,
Achin Vanaik
Lalita Ramdas
Abey George
P K Sundaram

Coalition for Nuclear Disarmament and Peace (CNDP)
124 A/6, Katwaria Sarai, New Delhi-110016
cndpindia@gmail.com | www.cndpindia.org | 9810556134



 

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