Kudankulam plant can withstand Fukushima-like disaster: Centre to SC

Court says it will not allow the plant to function if safety conditions are not met

By Ankur Paliwal
Published: Thursday 27 September 2012

Expressing concern over public and environmental safety of the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project, the Supreme Court has told the Centre that it will not allow the plant to function if the safety conditions are not met.

The court was responding to an affidavit moved by the Nuclear Power Corporation of India (NPCIL), which stated that the plant is well equipped to withstand a Fukushima-like disaster. The affidavit was filed consequent to a court order dated September 20, which asked NPCIL and the Atomic Energy Regulatory Board (AERB) to give details of the safety aspects of the plant. A petition was filed last month by G Sundararajan challenging the permission to operate granted to the plant by the Madras High Court.

“The plant has gone through a series of changes after the environmental clearance was granted in 1989. We have asked for a fresh environmental impact assessment of the plant,” says the petition. The petitioner was represented by activist lawyer Prashant Bhushan in the court. 

The court has also issued notices to the Union Ministry of Environment and Forests and the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board to file affidavits in response to the concerns raised over granting environmental clearance to the project. “We will not hesitate in halting the functioning of the plant if all safety measures are not met,” said the bench. The next hearing of the case is on November 4.  

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