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Kudankulam nuke plant safe, says Kalam

Former Prez says fears are unfounded, plant is safe from natural disasters, will benefit TN.

india Updated: Nov 07, 2011 01:47 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times

Former President and eminent scientist APJ Abdul Kalam on Sunday stood up for the nuclear power project coming up in Tamil Nadu after inspecting its safety aspects, and said there was enough scope for its expansion.

“Why stop at only 1,000 MW? The Kudankulam facility should go ahead with all its reactors and aim to generate 6,000 MW,” Kalam told press persons, adding he would use the media to convince the people “the power generated from Kudankulam would help in adding to the economic development of Tamil Nadu”.

“I am fully convinced with the safety features of the plant, which is the safest with its third-generation safety mechanisms in place. It is safe from natural disasters too,” he said after his long, detailed interaction with scientists, engineers and officials of Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd at the plant site.

Allaying the fears expressed by anti-nuke protesters, who have brought work inside the plant to a halt, Kalam said: “The fears are unfounded.”

NPCIL chairman and managing director SK Jain and plant site director MK Balaji were among the officials who received the former president at 9.30am and were with him through his visit, which lasted till lunch at 1.30pm.

The share of nuclear power in India’s electricity generation is less than 3% while it is more than 74% in the case of France.

Kalam’s visit started with a PowerPoint presentation by officials and then an inspection of reactor No. 1, the seawater intake reactor, the master control room and fish protection facility.

“Kalam said that he was visiting the Kudankulam facility for the second time (the first was as president in 2006) to examine the safety of the plant. He said he wanted to check on the radiation safety, thermodynamic safety, structural safety and structural integrity,” an NPCIL official present throughout Kalam’s visit told HT.

Tamil Nadu has another nuclear power plant in Kalapakkam.

First Published: Nov 06, 2011 08:18 IST