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Save Maharashtra from being a Chernobyl: SIO

New Delhi (24.04.2011): The Students Islamic Organisation of India (SIO) standing in solidarity with the mass movement of the people of Jaitapur and Maharashtra has demanded to the Government of India to ‘Save Maharashtra from being a Chernobyl’.
The President of SIO, Mohd. Azharuddin Said, “the nation has seen the effects of the worst of chemical disasters in the country as an aftermath of the 1984 Bhopal gas tragedy, from which the city is yet to recover. We do not wish for any such calamities and disasters for our brethren. It would be genocide if the Government of India would implement its decisions knowing the impacts of the emergency situation. We demand that Maharashtra be saved from being the next Chernobyl of the world.”
The activists sharing their concerns pointed towards the vast agricultural land that is acquired to build the project. Also the fear of contamination of the water table is a major concern amongst the activists opposing the Jaitapur Nuclear project.
In wake of the catastrophic accident at Fukushima, Japan which has unfolded the disasters of nuclear plants in times of emergency, SIO alongwith other organizations is demanding scrapping of the plans to set up nuclear power plants across the country and instead harvest the fruits of eco-friendly resources of energy.
The Fukushima accident has forced the Japanese government to evacuate an area of 20 kms from the plant; while the US has recommended an 80-km no-go zone to its citizens. Tens of thousands of people are being evacuated; the number could cross a few lakhs. The Japanese government has increased the severity of the accident to the highest level of seven, the same level as that of Chernobyl. The Chernobyl accident seriously contaminated an area as big as Maharashtra.
While four lakh people were evacuated, the many millions who continue to live in this region know that they are forever contaminated, that they could develop cancer anytime, that their children and grand children and great grand children could be born with severe birth defects. However, the government of India is hell-bent on pursuing its nuclear power expansion program, including setting up a string of nuclear plants all along India's coast. The biggest of these is coming up in the earthquake-prone region of Jaitapur, in Ratnagiri district of Maharashtra.

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