TN needs Kudankulam nuclear plant, PM tells Jayalalithaa

Surprising many observers, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has written to Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa on Wednesday telling her that shutting down the Kudankulam Nuclear Power project would have an adverse impact on the state's development.

Jayalalithaa has declared herself against the project, backing protesters at the site.
Singh has restated his earlier offer to set up a ''small group of experts to interact with the representatives of the people of the region to satisfy their legitimate concerns''.
The prime minister hopes the AIADMK government in the state will distance itself from the agitation against the Indo-Russian joint venture. The state government, after initially supporting the project, moved to oppose it late last month. Protests around the project have been on since mid-September.

The letter has reportedly irked the protesters in Kudankulam, who say that the centre and the state government should give up the useless letter writing habit and get down to looking into the people's problems seriously.

Speaking to The Times of India, M Pushparayan, convenor of the People's Movement Against Nuclear Power, said the prime minister's letter did not give any respite to them.

He said the AIADMK in its election manifesto during the recent assembly elections had promised to solve the power crisis in the state by using renewable energy sources.

"There are possibilities for that like providing solar panels for each household in the state. And it is not a myth. These methods should be explored by the state government instead of depending on nuclear power, from which many of the countries in the world are shying away," Pushparayan said.