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Five hundred women join hunger strike in south India

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Sarah MacShane
WVoN co-editor

Peace activists in the southern state of Tamil Nadu in India have organized an indefinite hunger strike against the dangers posed by the Koodankulam nuclear power plant.

Twenty four peace activists were joined by almost 500 women and 10 men last week, making it the fourth round of hunger strikes in the past nine months.

Although the health of some of the activists is deteriorating fast, they have determined it should be a “peaceful struggle to the death”.

More and more women want to join the movement but because of logistical issues, they cannot be accommodated.

The People’s Movement against Nuclear Energy (PMANE) has demanded an immediate halt to the ongoing work at the power plant, but have said they will withdraw if the government sets out a time frame for fulfilling some of their demands.

SP Udayakumar, co-coordinator of PMANE, said people were upset by the government’s attitude towards their peaceful protest against the KNPP for the past nine months.

Now that almost 500 women have joined the other 24 on hunger strike, there is an urgent need to step up the pressure and increase the awareness campaign.

Change.org have organized a petition to support those who have been wrongfully imprisoned and charged for exercising their right of free speech against nuclear reactors and for those citizens who are already in danger because they live in a tsunami, volcanic and earthquake zone.

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