Amidst the tensions surrounding the fishing villages around Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project, a local court has on Tuesday issued a non-bailable arrest warrant against SP Udayakumar, leader of the protests against the project.
The warrant is following Udayakumar failing to show up before the court as required on Tuesday. Senior police officials stationed at Kudankulam to monitor situation are tight lipped on when the arrest, if at all, could take place. Villagers at the plant have vowed to shield Udayakumar from Police.
Meanwhile, Udayakumar who offered to surrender last week subsequent to protests turning violent and Police firing has implied against such move now.
Udayakumar in hiding since a week has on Tuesday appeared at Kuthankuzhi a village 15 KMs from Kudankulam to address reporters. The roads to Kuthankuzhi were dug up by anti-plant protestors to prohibit Police from reaching Udayakumar.
"I wanted to surrender to avoid any further violence or damage to the villagers and also to turn the focus to people and movement from me. But now, any decision would be in consultation and approval of local people," Udayakumar told HT.
Asked about their move in event of fuel loading into the reactors, Udayakumar said, "It would only show government's disrespect towards people's sentiments. Our agitation though would remain peaceful and democratic," Udayakumar said.
Sources said that leaders of fishing communities of three south Tamilnadu districts - Tirunelveli, Tuticorin and Kanyakumari are convening on Wednesday in support of Kudankulam protests.
The People's Movement Against Nuclear Energy (PMANE) further strategy would be based on feedback of all such communities, Amirtharaj Stephen, an aide of Udayakumar and member, PMANE said.
Udayakumar also lashed out at Tamilnadu CM J Jayalalithaa for her 'flip-flops over the plant.' "She might have weighed the options and leaned in favour of nuclear power that would elevate her standing as a PM candidate. But people here perceive it as betrayal," he said.
All roads leading to Kudankulam are heavily fortified by Tamilnadu Police. 21 Companies (11 of them women) administered by 10 DSPs, 20 Inspectors, 35 Sub Inspectors are present at the plant. No untoward incident was reported till evening.
Marxist veteran V S Achuthanandan's bid to visit Kudankulam in solidarity with the agitation was foiled by Tamil Nadu police at the border town of Kaliyikkavila, 25 kms south of Thiruvananthapuram.
The Police who stopped the former Kerala CM convoy requested him not to proceed further in view of security reasons. Achuthanandan defied the CPM directive to visit Kudankulam.
"I am disappointed I could not reach the venue. But I do not wish to worsen the law and order situation in Tamil Nadu," he said.
(With inputs from Ramesh Babu in Thiruvananthapuram)