TIRUNELVELI: Collector R Selvaraj on Wednesday extended the prohibitory orders under Section 144 of the CrPC, which was effective for the area within a 2 km radius of the Koodankulam Nuclear Power Plant Project (KKNPP), to a radius of 7 km from the plant. “It is understood that the anti-KKNPP protesters have planned to involve in unlawful activities. Considering the safety of the general public and to ensure the safety of KKNPP workers, the prohibitory orders have been extended to 7 km around KKNPP,” the Collector said in a press release.
On Wednesday morning, a large contingent of police personnel was deployed in the Koodakulam area. In addition to the 11 companies stationed in Koodankulam, another six companies of police have been deployed, a police officer said.
At a time when more than 300 anti-KKNPP protesters, mostly women, were staging an indefinite fast at Idintahkarai, the additional deployment of police triggered tension in the area.
After the state government gave its nod to start work at the KKNPP, the Collector imposed the prohibitory orders in Radhapuram Taluk, where Koodankulam and Idinthakarai were located, effective from March 19.
However,after People’s Movement Against Nuclear Energy (PMANE) coordinator S P Udayakumar and other anti-KKNPP protestors called off their indefinite fast at Idinthakarai, the restrictions were eased and confined to an area within a 2 km radius (only Koodankulam) of the KKNPP.
On Tuesday condemning the Central and State governments for not being concerned about the lives of the protesters on indefinite fast at Idinthakarai, 23,000 villagers surrendered their EPICs (voter identity cards).
PMANE coordinator SP Udayakumar said that many protesters were observing the indefinite fast for the eighth day in Idinthakarai.