SC dismisses petition seeking to stall Kudankulam commissioning

Rejects demand for panel to examine whether court’s directions on safety measures are being properly implemented

By Ankur Paliwal
Published: Friday 09 May 2014


The Supreme Court has dismissed the petition seeking to stall commissioning of the Kudankulam nuclear plant in Tamil Nadu. The court, in its order of May 8, said it was satisfied with the safety measures taken by the government.

The apex court had given its go ahead for the plant’s commissioning last year and had directed the project proponents to comply with a list of safety measures before commissioning the plant. 

Read more on safety concerns of Kudankulam plant

A bench led by Justice K S Radhakrishnan noted that most of the directions had been dealt with by the authorities and they still had some time left to fulfill the long-term goals.

The bench was hearing the petition filed by Chennai-based activist, G Sundarrajan, who alleged in his petition, that in July last year Atomic Energy Regulatory Board (AERB) had “hurriedly” granted clearance for proceeding with the commissioning of the plant. Sundarrajan said that the government has gone ahead with commissioning of the plant without implementing all the directions of the court.

Prashant Bhushan, who represented Sundarrajan in court, argued that a team headed by a former chairperson of AERB be constituted to examine whether the court’s directions are being properly implemented or not. But the court rejected his demand. “We find it unnecessary to appoint any committee at this stage since the status report and the affidavits indicate that the respondents are taking necessary steps so as to give effect to various directions, even though some of the directions are yet to be fulfilled, which naturally would take some more time," said the bench of Justices Radhakrishnan and Vikramajit Sen.

Reportedly, Bhushan alleged that the project proponents have used sub-standard equipments in the plant which are creating problems in cabling and instrumentation. He also claimed that the authorities were yet to decide where the spent fuel permanent repository would be located. But both Tamil Nadu and the Central government claimed that all safety measures are in place.

SC Judgement: Judgement of the Supreme Court of India regarding clearance given by AERB to Unit 1 of Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project, 08/05/2014

SC Judgement: Supreme Court judgement dated 06/05/2013 on Kudankulam nuclear power plant

HC Judgement: Madras High Court judgement on the Kundankulam Nuclear Power Project dated 31/08/2012

Report: Supplementary report on safety of Kudankulam nuclear power project and impact of its operations on surroundings

Letter: Koodankulam: an open letter to the Fellow Citizens of India

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