Smugglers funding Jaitapur N-protest?

The Kudankulam nuclear complex is stuck at the pre-commissioning stage because of the protest around those parts organized by NGOs whom Manmohan Singh has identified as being funded by cash-rich American NGOs with the agenda of torpedoing the PM’s ambitious nuclear electricity generation plan.  Unused to the people derailing a govt program, Moscow is upset that GOI has so far chosen to do nothing other than prevaricate. But at a workshop today, a senior DAE official on the sidelines, offered the view that Uday Kumar, the agitation leader, has a dubious background, but that the plant opening will not be delayed beyond a couple of months. With the squeezing of the Indian NGOs by linking them, correctly, with Western NGOs the protestors will  apparently soon be cleared out. The critical factor will be CM Jayalaltha’s reaction. Tamil Nadu has peak demand power deficit that KK-1 and KK-2 can meet. But equally, her political interests are better served by further needling the coalition setup at th centre.

Investigation of the N-protestors has other than in Kudankulum, also revealed, this official informed me, that in Jaitapur, Maharashtra, the protest ostensibly led by local fisherfolk, is being funded by smugglers from the Konkan area who use the proximal coast as landing ground for their contraband they bring in from Dubai and elsewhere because they fear they will be compelled to move out of the area altogether. The complicating factor for the Congress  party in Delhi is that this protest is piggybacking on the political fight between the Maharashtra Nav Nirmnan Sena of Raj Thackeray and the local Congress party Maharashtra State minister, Rane.  The trouble with all this is the manifest weakness of the central govt and the desire of the PM to make the proverbial omelette w/o breaking eggs. Well, good luck!

About Bharat Karnad

Senior Fellow in National Security Studies at the Centre for Policy Research, New Delhi, he was Member of the (1st) National Security Advisory Board and the Nuclear Doctrine-drafting Group, and author, among other books of, 'Nuclear Weapons and Indian Security: The Realist Foundations of Strategy', 'India's Nuclear Policy' and most recently, 'Why India is Not a Great Power (Yet)'. Educated at the University of California (undergrad and grad), he was Visiting Scholar at Princeton University, University of Pennsylvania, the Shanghai Institutes of International Studies, and Henry L. Stimson Center, Washington, DC.
This entry was posted in India's strategic thinking and policy, Indian Politics, Internal Security, Nuclear Policy & Strategy. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Smugglers funding Jaitapur N-protest?

  1. Pingback: Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant: GOI pulls the plug on 3 NGOs - Page 18

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