Koodankulam and Vilappilsala are merely harbingers of a frightening future awaiting the common people, poet and activist Sugathakumari said on Saturday.
She was addressing the convention ‘From Koodankulam to Vilappilsala: Livelihood Messages’ organised by various women organisations including Kerala Mahila Sangham, Kerala Sasthra Sahitya Parishath (Women’s wing) and the Kerala Sthreevedi.
“A mock drill was conducted for residents of Koodankulam. They were asked to run as fast as they could once the siren went off. But the question here is how far will they run and what will these men do with their children, women and cattle? I wonder how authorities can assure us about something that is not in their hands. I appreciate the courage and fortitude of my sisters in Vilappilsala,” Sugathakumari said.
“The people of Vilappilsala would rather die than allow their land to be turned into a trash dump,” Vilappil panchayat president Shobhanakumari said.
“Villages are not garbage bins. We will not encourage dumping of waste in our land anymore. Rather, we will die in this struggle for existence,” Shobhanakumari said.
Manrose, a protestor from Koodankulam, echoed the sentiment. “Either you let us live in our soil peacefully or else we are ready to die for our rights to live,” she said.
Jameela Prakasam MLA also spoke. A rally was conducted from YMCA Hall to the Secretariat. The convention also featured a poster exhibition and a 10-minute documentary ‘Daughters of the Sea: Voices from Koodankulam’ directed by K Satheesh.