The second wave of protests against the Kudankulam nuclear power plant was called off temporarily on Sunday in view of the local body polls across Tamil Nadu.
The hunger strike by 106 villagers and blockade of the plant in Tirunelveli district, 650 km south of Chennai, was suspended after political party representatives met the protesters.
“We are temporarily calling off the protests to ensure smooth polls,” said SP Udaykumar, convenor of the People Against Nuclear Energy, which is spearheading the protests.
Another leader said, “The hunger strike will restart on Tuesday after polling ends Monday.” He did not say if the blockade would begin again.
More than 1,000 people trapped on the premises of the Indo-Russian project breathed easy at the break in the blockade that began on October 13, the fifth day of the protests.
The protesters, who had till then resorted to fasts, had blocked the roads to the plant, preventing the entry of scientists, engineers and contract labourers.
By Saturday, those trapped inside faced a shortage of essential supplies. Later, Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd officials had sent the essential items inside with police help.
The first wave of protests had ended on September 21.