The nuclear energy debate in India: Response to Dr APJ Abdul Kalam from Dr Surendra Gadekar

Dr. SURENDRA GADEKAR is a well-published physicist of international renown, and a Gandhian. After an MSc and PhD (in theoretical physics) in 1979 from IIT Kanpur, he worked for two years as a post-doctoral fellow at Iowa State University, US and then two years as a research associate at IISc in Bangalore. He resigned in 1986 (a little before Chernobyl) to do antinuclear work when the Kakrapar Nuclear Power Plant was started. In 1987, he started Anumukti A Journal Devoted to Non-Nuclear Indiaand has carried out and published studies of the impact of nuclear energy around the plants at Kakrapar, Rawatbata and Jadugoda.  He has also carried out a study at Pokharan, which is as yet unpublished. Dr Gadekar’s response follows:

Dr A P J Abdul Kalam and‭ ‬Mr.‭ ‬Srijan Pal Singh deserve a special thanks for their article in the Sunday edition of The Hindu‭ (‬November‭ ‬6,‭ ‬2011‭) ‬entitled‭ ‬“Nuclear power is our gateway to a prosperous future.‭”‬

Although most of what they write is irrelevant to their topic and the rest just plain wrong,‭ ‬the very fact that the establishment has to bring out its‭ ‬‘Big Guns‭’‬ to answer the questions raised by the Koodankulam movement,‭ ‬is a testimony to the success of the movement.

Originally I had intended to write a point by point refutation of their article,‭ ‬but I have been deterred by the sheer length of the article.‭ ‬What I intend to do here instead is to paraphrase their points and answer them one by one.‭ ‬I would urge activists to visit the Hindu website at and to read the article in the full. I make this request specially so that friends can point out if I have been unfair in summarizing their work or have missed something important.

Kalam and Singh make the following points:
Because of its millions of times higher energy density,‎ ‏uranium fuel requires much less material handling than coal: ‎“‏There is a distinct and categorical correlation between the energy consumption and income of a nation‭ ‬-‭ ‬each reinforcing the other.‭”‬

The electricity demand will have to grow from the current‎ ‏150,000‎ ‏MW to at least‭ ‬950,000‭ ‬MW by‭ ‬2030‭ ‬for economic growth.‭ ‎ ‏The German decision to opt out of nuclear power‭ ‬“suits its current scenario which goes beyond mere concerns of risk posed by nuclear power.‭”‬ Besides,‭ ‬“Nuclear energy never fit into its goal of energy independence‭”‬ since its uranium production was‭ ‬much smaller than required.

India has huge deposits of Thorium which is considered to be the nuclear fuel of the future.‎ ‏Thorium has many advantages over uranium:‭ ‬produces eight times more energy for the same mass,‭ ‬has a less toxic waste stream,‭ ‬is more‭ ‬abundantly available. Most prosperous nations extract about‎ ‏30‎ ‏to‭ ‬40‭ ‬percent of their power from nuclear.‭  (‬Accompanied by a table of nine countries,‭ ‬the first eight top nuclear producers plus India‭ (‬15‭) ‬showing their total nuclear capacity,‭ ‬its share in electricity production and their GDP adjusted by PPP.)

The developed world has a habit to‎ ‏“Misguide emerging nations like India,‎ ‏which are a potential challenge to their neo-age proxy-imperial economic subjugation.‭ ‬What is needed for our India,‭ ‬we‭ ‬Indians have to decide.‭”

‎ ‏Solar and wind are the greenest sources of power but despite advantages are not reliable due to their dependence on weather conditions.‭ ‬Nuclear on the other hand is dependable having more than‭ ‬14000‭ ‬reactor years of experience and an international presence.‭ ‎

‏A nuclear plant is not a nuclear bomb.‭ ‬Our understanding of nuclear disasters and accidents is coloured by our fears regarding destruction caused by nuclear weapons. While there was a huge loss to property,‎ ‏there was no loss of life either during the accident or in the efforts to contain it at Fukushima.‭ ‬A lot of progress has been made in nuclear emergency management in the last‭ ‬25‭ ‬years after Chernobyl.

Radiation fallout causes no harm to future generations although it does increase the cancer risk in the present generation. There are opportunity costs of not using nuclear.‎ ‏If nuclear is stopped the gap would be filled by using more fossil fuel plants leading to increased pollution and global warming.

Only four major incidents have taken place during the six decades long history of nuclear power generation Kyshtym,‎ ‏Three Mile Island,‭ ‬Chernobyl and Fukushima.‭ ‬Of these,‭ ‬Kyshtym was due to underdeveloped technology in fuel reprocessing,‭ ‬Three Mile Island‭ ‬and Chernobyl were due to human errors and Fukushima due to extraordinary natural forces.‭ ‬The occurrence of four accidents in six decades does not make a case for abandoning our key energy source for the future.‭ ‬All technological progress comes at an incremental risk.

My response:
Only a few tons of uranium
To get those few tons of uranium one needs to dig thousands of tons of ore because the concentration of the uranium in‭ ‬the ore is very small.‭ ‬Uranium Corporation of India‭ (‬UCIL‭) ‬claims that it is‭ ‬0.067%‭ ‬at Jaduguda.‭ ‬However,‭ ‬as shown by me in a paper in Bulletin of Atomic Scientists,‭ ‬this claim is erroneous since if true,‭ ‬there should have been no shortage of uranium fuel in the country prior to signing of the‭ ‬123‭ ‬agreement.‭ ‬The uranium concentration is more likely to be‭ ‬0.03%‭ ‬at best.‭ ‬This means that each ton of ore that is dug one can at most get a mere‭ ‬300‭ ‬grammes of natural uranium.‭ ‬The rest‭ ‬999.7‭ ‬kg ends up as waste in places around Jaduguda where it shall continue to spew radiation for thousands of years and‭ ‬cause horrific deformities in children.‭

Mythical correlation between energy production and national income
Actually what this means is that the more energy you use,‭ ‬the richer you are.‭ ‬It does not matter whether that energy is put to do useful work or just frivolously‭ ‬wasted‭;‬ your wealth is assured by the very fact that it is produced.‭ ‬In the old days,‭ ‬nucleocrats used to show a straight line graph of energy production versus GNP.‭ ‬This held true for many countries till the‭ ‬“imperial economic subjugation‭”‬ of the Arab lands in the Middle East was able to hold oil prices to ridiculously low levels.‭ ‬But after early‭ ‬1970s,‭ ‬when energy prices began to rise,‭ ‬this correlation broke down as people even in the developed countries began to
use energy more efficiently.‭ ‬The energy consumption fell while the GNP continued to rise.

No sharp rise in electricity demand,‭ ‬no economic growth
This is just a corollary of the earlier point except that Dr Kalam and Singh have subtly substituted electricity for energy.‭ ‬Although‭ ‬electricity is one form of energy,‭ ‬it is not a synonym.‭ ‬In India, ‬electricity meets less than‭ ‬12%‭ ‬of the total energy needs and in no country is this figure larger than‭ ‬30%.‭ ‬Nuclear energy can only produce electricity and is thus in no position to meet our total energy requirement of the future.‭ ‬At today‭’‬s levels,‭ ‬it can at best address only‭ ‬12%‭
‬of our energy needs,‭ ‬the rest‭ ‬88%‭ ‬is met by other sources.‭ ‬The fact that it actually only meets‭ ‬2%‭ ‬of this‭ ‬12%‭ ‬today,‭ ‬is another story.

The strange case of Germany 
I find it rather strange that Germany,‭ ‬no doubt a very rich and energy surplus country had just kept seven nuclear power plants going although they did not‭ ‬“fit into its goal of energy independence‭”‬ just to have something to shut down when Fukushima struck.‭ ‬All the more strange because just a few months before,‭ ‬the Angela Merkel government had extended the life of these very reactors‭ ‬-‭ ‬a decision they were forced to rescind following large public protests after Fukushima.‭ ‬India on the other hand will of course,‭ ‬never compromise on energy independence,‭ ‬though unfortunately we too produce far less uranium than our needs and signed the‭ ‬123‭ ‬treaty and have been so active in changing our liability laws.‭

The thorium carrot
The great advantages of thorium and especially our large deposits were well known even fifty years ago when Dr Homi Bhabha first formulated the three
stage nuclear programme.‭ ‬The third stage envisaged‭ ‬large scale utilization of thorium deposits within‭ ‬20‭ ‬to‭ ‬25‭ ‬years.‭ ‬Even after‭ ‬fifty years we still seem to be at least‭ ‬25‭ ‬years away from being able to‭ ‬realize‭ ‬this dream.‭ ‬Neither Americans,‭ ‬or the French,‭ ‬Russians,‭ ‬Canadians,‭ ‬British,‭ ‬Japanese,‭ ‬etc.‭ ‬seem interested in thorium technology.‭ (‬Why should they since it is we who are sitting on the deposits.‭)  Secondly thorium based electricity costs are likely to be even greater than those based on uranium which are already uncompetitive in the marketplace. ‬With nobody to buy,‭ ‬beg,‭ ‬borrow or steal from,‭ ‬thorium dreams are likely to remain just dreams in the foreseeable future.

Prosperous nations rely on nuclear energy
Although I looked hard at the table provided by The Hindu,‭ ‬the only  ‘prosperous’ countries having‭ ‬more than‭ ‬30%‭ ‬of their electricity coming from nuclear were France,‭ ‬Ukraine and South Korea.‭ I was surprised by the prosperity of Ukraine. It turned out to be ranked at 102 in the list of prosperous nation by GDP (PPP) per capita, although the share of nuclear in its electricity is 48%. ‬All the others in the table including US,‭ ‬Japan,‭ ‬Russia,‭ ‬UK,‭ ‬and‭ ‬Canada‭ ‬had their nuclear share of electricity production less than‭ ‬30%.‭ The most ‬prosperous countries by per capita GDP were Qatar, Luxembourg, Singapore, Norway, and Brunei, none of which were to‭ ‬be found anywhere in the table presumably since their nuclear shares are not outstanding.‭ ‬Thus,‭ ‬to conclude that‭ ‬most‭ ‬prosperous countries‭ ‬have nuclear share of‭ ‬their‭ ‬electricity
production in the‭ ‬30‭ ‬to‭ ‬40‭ ‬percent range is poetic license.

“‏Proxy-imperial economic subjugation‭”
In my youth,‭ ‬there‭ ‬used to be a song,‭ ‬“A spoonful of sugar makes the medicine go down‭”‬.‭ ‬In a similar vein I find a spoonful of patriotism is helpful in selling otherwise‭ disreputable‬ ideas.‭ ‬In the context‭ ‬(Koodankulam protests‭) ‬in which the Dr Kalam and Singh article has been written,‭ ‬I find‭ ‬this invocation rather rich,‭ ‬since while foreign inspiration for the protest are purely speculation,‭ ‬the fact that the plant‭ ‬has been made by foreign money‭ ‬and‭ ‬expertise is undeniable.‭
‬It does not‭ ‬behove those‭ ‬like the nuclear establishment in India,‭ ‬who have been moving heaven and earth to save foreign suppliers from liability, even for‭ ‬willful‭ ‬negligence to wrap themselves in the flag so‭ ‬blatantly.

Dependability thy name is nuclear
Strange countries like Germany and‭ ‬Denmark‭ ‬find‭ ‬solar and wind‭ ‬dependable‭ ‬enough‭ ‬despite their‭ ‬intermittent‭ ‬nature and produce around‭ ‬20%‭ ‬of their electricity dependably from‭ ‬these‭ ‬‘undependable‭’‬ sources,‭ ‬while our rulers,‭ despite ‬our surfeit of Sun,‭ ‬seem to think that there is no alternative to nuclear. But even here, just during the last two decades, wind has already built capacity one and a half times more than nuclear has managed to do with all the
mollycoddling ‭ of the last sixty years. ‬Japan is currently realizing the true dependability of nuclear since more than a third of its reactors are currently out of action following the earthquake and tsunami in March. They are likely to remain in this state of limbo, for quite some time due to ‘irrational’ public opposition to restarting them.

The destructive might of an atom bomb‭ ‬is‭ ‬because of the blast,‭ ‬the heat and‭ ‬also‭ ‬due to radiation.‭ ‬This was observed‭ ‬and documented in Hiroshima and Nagasaki.‭ ‬While most nuclear reactors will probably not explode like a nuclear bomb‭ (‬no bets on fast breeder reactors like the one under construction at Kalpakkam‭) ‬the radiation contained within is hundreds of times larger‭ ‬than that within a bomb.‭ ‬So the radiation contamination of surrounding countryside is hundreds of times larger than that produced by the bomb.‭ ‬Hiroshima and Nagasaki are thriving cities today but the area surrounding Chernobyl and Fukushima will not permit human habitation for centuries.

Nuclear emergency management‭ ‬2.0
The main ‘lesson’ nuclear establishments all over the world learned from  Chernobyl was that ‘radio-phobia’ is a bigger danger than radiation.‭  Ignorance is bliss.  ‬Keep the people in ignorance‭ ‬through misinformation.‭

First say nothing.

Next,  if forced to say something give out a very low figure by ‘mistake’. ‬

If your lies are detected, apologize profusely but keep repeating a variation of the lie.‭ ‬Increase‭ ‬‘safe‭’‬ radiation limits twenty times.‭

‬Whether this management method is‭ ‬‘better‭’‬ or worse only time would tell,‭ ‬but if‭ ‬it does prove to be the wrong course,‭ ‬then goodbye, Japan.‭ ‬The country would have sacrificed its already few young on the alter of‭ ‬‘better‭’‬ nuclear emergency‭ ‬management.‭ ‬As far as,‭ ‬“Not one person died at Fukushima‭”‬ myth,‭ ‬the tsunami has conveniently wiped out the evidence.  Many keep dying doing the cleanup but TEPCO’s mastery of disinformation techniques has successfully kept their deaths hidden from the mainstream media.

Radiation‭ ‬does‭ ‬cause great harm to future generations
The radio-nuclides released from catastrophes like Chernobyl and Fukushima
like caesium-137‭ ‬and strontium-90‭ ‬for instance‭ ‬have long half lives.‭ ‬They shall remain in the environment for far longer than one generation.‭ ‬There is no doubt that our children and their children will ingest and inhale them and suffer the consequences.‭ ‬Even the most die-hard nucleocrats,‭ in ‬the French and US nuclear regulatory agencies have accepted the need to move beyond Hiroshima Nagasaki data of the RERF for‭ ‬radiation‭ ‬effects.‭ ‬The mutagenetic effects of radiation‭ ‬have been known since they‭ ‬were first demonstrated by Hermann Muller‭ ‬in‭ ‬1926‭ ‬and‭ that ‬later‭ ‬won him a Nobel‭ ‬prize. It is not that genetic effects
of radiation are not well known and documented. They have just been ignored
time and again so that the world was not denied the ‘benefits’ of nuclear

Opportunity costs of‭ ‬using‭ ‬nuclear energy
Dr Kalam and‭ ‬Singh have enumerated what they term the opportunity costs
of not going nuclear.‭ ‬However,‭ ‬they ignore the opportunity costs of going nuclear.‭ ‬Even a staunchly pronuclear publication like The Tech (MIT’s oldest and largest technology newspaper) has published an article that admits that by any realistic‭ ‬reckoning‭ ‬new nuclear costs are likely to be at least more than twice as much as the costs from a new gas fired electricity generation in the US and cannot be commercially competitive.‭ ‬For India to follow a sensible energy path,‭ ‬the first priority must be to meet the real needs of the poorest section of the population. The biggest use of energy in the country is for domestic cooking. Electricity has no role to play in this. Heating using electricity is extremely inefficient. Since nuclear energy can make only electricity, it does not answer to our real energy needs. Even if one ignores the 88% of our energy requirements which are met by sources other than electricity and concentrates on the electricity sector alone, the first priority should be to provide electricity to the 400 million people who have no access to it today. Nuclear energy due to its inflexibility to follow demand, does not meet this need at all.

Today, Kerosene has to be subsidized since otherwise a large section of the country would be condemned to live in darkness since not everybody has access to electric lighting. But Kerosene subsidy implies diesel subsidy as well to prevent adulteration which leads to the obscene phenomena of diesel luxury cars gobbling up this subsidy ostensibly meant for the poor.

All the energy sources used by the rich today are subsidized while none used by the poor are. It is this “Somebody has to pay the price of development but it better not be me,” kind of development that people in Koodankulam are protesting about.

Only four!
I feel embarrased to point to such eminent personalities that there is a mistake in their counting. Even if we confine ourselves to the incidents picked by Dr Kalam and Singh, Fukushima daiichi is not just a single reactor. There are actually six of them, four of which had explosions, one of them even though it had been emptied of fuel long before the tsunami. Seven major accidents (incidents is the classic nukespeak) in just 14000 reactors years means an average of a major catastrophic accident every 2000 reactor-years. Since there are some 437 operating power reactors in the world, this means that an accident on such a scale is likely every four and a half years. Seen in this context, the safety record of nuclear industry does not seem to be something to be proud of.

Dr Kalam and Singh rhetorically ask, “Whether we will allow an accident in a 40 year old reactor to derail our dreams to be an economically developed nation?

I shall only point out first, that while reactor 1 was indeed 40 years old having started in 1971, there were accidents in reactors 2 (1973) and 3 (1974) as well and the spent fuel storage area of reactor 4 (1979) also.

Second, that our dreams need to be inclusive of everybody and not just the fat-cats.

Third, the risky vehicle that they have chosen to turn their dreams into reality is likely to turn the dream into a nightmare from hell.

28 thoughts on “The nuclear energy debate in India: Response to Dr APJ Abdul Kalam from Dr Surendra Gadekar”

  1. Clean, Green & Abundant should be the keywords for our energy requirements of the future. Solar & Wind are two popularly known sources but there is a huge resistance from the power regime for these sources to get a larger implementation. I know of a person who has designed small wind power units (1′ x 3′ x 5′) that are good for average households. They generate around 1.5-2 KW per hour minimum and on windy days even upto 6KW per hour. However, his cost of production is pretty high, given that he doesn’t manufacture them on a large enough scale. He has been rebuffed by the Ministry of Power and is also finding it difficult to involve private players into this enterprise.

    Apart from Solar & Wind energy, there’s one more source that’s clean, green & abundant, especially in the Indian context – Tidal power. With our large coastline & the inherent currents alongside it, we can generate a sizeable amount of our energy needs from the sea. As of now, its supposed to be an expensive source of power, but costs do come down with proper research & long-term plans. If cost was such a huge deterrent, we wouldn’t be seeing mobile phones in vogue, would we?


    1. Dear Sameer,

      I am very much interested in alternate source of energy like wind/solar. Request share the contact details of the person who designed the mini wind power unit

      Manish Shah


  2. Amidst the misinformation, just what one was looking for! A point by point rebuttal may be even better.


  3. Thanks doctor. You are absolutely right. But what happens in reality is that the governments and the nuclear lobby do not divulge all the dangers related to N-energy. Because there are billions of rupees involved and the beneficiaries are as you said the “fat cats”. Living in France I know this for a fact. Curiously France is very eager to sell us their expertise in N-enegy production. There have been waves of protests against N-
    plants here justly because even the French specialists confess that we cannot guarantee ‘zero risk’ in the affair. But stuck with the problems of unemplyment and Economic recession, the so called developped economies try to sell to “emerging powers”
    their dangerous and redundant technologies.I have been told that I had my thyroid glands affected by radiation from Chernobyl(!) -I have had my thyroid glands wholly removed- and it has been detected by private group of scientists and experts that the radiation clouds did come over France during that period. But the joke was that at that time the French ministry of Public Health annouced in the media that the Chernobyl clouds did not arrive over France, (THIS WAS A BLATANT LIE AND IRRESPONSIBLE) while the neighbouring Germany, Switzerland, etc warned the public not to consume the farm/agricultural products for a certain period. There is still simmering discontent in France and all over Europe about the N-plants. And all countries on the continent are investing massively for the research and inventions in renewable and clean energies like solar, wind, tidal etc. I am
    told that we can even produce electricity from the earth if only our applied science gets to
    work on it. In any ase, there are several anti-Nuclear groups here and Indian NGOs might
    profit in getting in touch with them. Nuclear waste disposal has been a headache for the N-establishment here. There have been protestations regularly. What these N-powers do now is to keep a lid of silence about the dangers of N-power and try to sell it (not to say dumpit!) on the emerging “powers” who want to “shine” as economic giants, forgetting in
    the process the frightening consquences of such advance, forgetting that these power stations are to be built in thickly populated regions. In this context, may I mention the name of Bunker Roy whose daring efforts for selfsufficiency in our villages need a real salute. He was featured on TED an educative group telecast based at New York Thanks again, doctor..


  4. Cut to the chase, the Koodankulam issue is just another rich versus poor story. Would anyone who reads this website allow a nuclear power plant to come up in the Manesar forest (if all the conditions were ideal for the plant)?

    Of course no. The kids go to nearby schools from the condominiums. It’s too risky. You have been exposed! See you around.


  5. I think Dr. SURENDRA GADEKAR is not aware about latest developments in thorium technology. Australia and India is developing ADS.The best thing should be to develop Accelerator Driven Sub-Critical Systems (ADS) nuclear reactor .Development of Accelerator Driven Sub-Critical Systems (ADS) nuclear reactor is the latest addition to the Indian nuclear programme. ADS can provide a strong technology base for large scale thorium utilisation. As a first step towards realisation of ADS, DAE has launched to development of proton injector. To carry out experimental studies on sub-critical assemblies, a 14 MeV neutron generator has also been upgraded with a higher current ion source. “
    This is the safest way to produce nuclear energy. Australia is having enough good quality coal, uranium and thorium. But they are developing ADS because this is the safest way to produce nuclear energy from thorium. Norway is also interested to develop ADS. But they do not have sufficient fund. The Advantage of ADS is that it can be used in the existing critical reactors. Instead of control rod they use ADS. To get more info go to google search and type the details given below:-
    Accelerator Driven Sub-critical Nuclear Reactors for Safe Energy Production and Nuclear Waste Incineration[1]
    S.R. Hashemi-Nezhad[2]
    School of Physics, A28, University of Sydney, NSW 2006, Australia
    After the Fukushima accident in Japan they also may be interested to develop sub critical reactors. Another research is going on to develop Liquid Fluoride Thorium Reactor. Developed nations are not trying to reduce pollution through nuclear energy because nuclear scientists have not found any viable method to dispose the nuclear waste. Then why India is interested to go in for more number uranium reactors. This is only to help foreign companies.


  6. Will Dr Surendra Gadekar comment on this news item prominently published in

    Nuclear is the safest form of power, says top UK scientist

    Sir David King says nuclear power is a ‘massive economic opportunity’ and should be pursued despite incidents in Japan

    Stepping on to a transatlantic flight will expose a person to more radiation than walking around the Fukushima nuclear power station inJapan – even in its current state of near-meltdown – according to the UK government’s former chief scientist.
    Sir David King mounted a robust defence of nuclear power on Wednesday as renewed fears over its dangers buffeted the industry. He said it was the safest form of electricity generation, and that the recovery of most of Japan’s nuclear fleet after the worst earthquake in living memory showed that safety systems were working.
    “An earthquake of 9.0 [magnitude] hit Japan, and all 16 nuclear plants that felt the earthquake were switched off within two minutes,” he said. “Every one of them acted as they were meant to, including Fukushima. Water cooling was initiated, as designed.”
    He pointed out that the 14-metre tsunami which hit Fukushima was “an extremely unlikely event” that overwhelmed defences designed for a tsunami of more than 2m. When this happened, the battery systems stepped in to pump cooling water round the plant for nine and a half hours, he said. All this was evidence of safety systems kicking in correctly.
    “As far as we know, not one person has died from radiation,” he added. “Let me put that in context – in the same week, 30 coal miners died. Generating electricity from coal is far more dangerous.”
    He asked: “Is there safer power than nuclear energy historically? No. Even hydroelectricity has caused more fatalities.”
    Nuclear power represented a “massive economic opportunity” for the UK, Sir David said, and one that should be kept on track despite the incidents in Japan.
    Sir David said the lessons from the Japanese incident would help to improve safety further. “We should be looking carefully at the lessons we have learned from this tsunami and how to manage the risks. On the whole, [the Japanese nuclear industry] responded well.”
    The problems in Japan “could never have been a Chernobyl – that could not have happened,” he said. The mass evacuations that have taken place were a good precaution, but people were not in danger, he said.
    Airline passengers unwittingly expose themselves to a dose of radiation when they fly, but it is harmless as it is in such small quantities.
    Sir David also said he did not believe the assertion by Connie Hedegaard, Europe’s climate change commissioner, that electricity generation from offshore wind was cheaper than nuclear power. “My own view is that nuclear is going to prove to be very competitive,” he said.
    But he said that in the race to decarbonise electricity production, countries should pursue all available non-fossil fuel options, including all forms of renewable energy.
    Sir David was speaking at the launch of a new report from the Smith School of Enterprise, part of Oxford University, which showed that the UK should reform its nuclear industry in order to recycle spent fuel waste into new usable fuel for the new generation of reactors the coalition government is pressing for.


  7. If the contention of Dr Surendra is that all energy sources of the rich are subsidized and none of poor are, then let the policy change to no subsidy for any energy source. However, the left seems to be the first to protest any reduction in subsidy.

    Furthermore, that somebody has to pay the price for development but not me seems to be the very attitude of those protesting against Koodankulam. It has already cost over 13,000 Crs to set up the plant and it is close to operations. Just because Fukushima happened in recent history, everyone is happy to join this anti-nuclear bandwagon. I would like to see someone from the left take responsibility of the cost and suggest a method to pay for it.

    Solar energy: Solar energy needs large amount of land (one of the largest as compared to other energy sources). land acquisition sees no support from the left. Solar energy is expensive (11-14/unit) and almost 3-4 times more expensive than coal and twice as expensive as coal/gas based energy. This is a fact know to people who have worked even 1 year in the power sector. You do not need MIT to certify that gas is cheaper than nuclear. You also need to know that gas prices are highly volatile and Dhabol was the one of the plants using gas. We all know how that ended. Also, transporting gas over long distances is a pain. Most of India’s gas comes form the middle-east unlike US where most of gas is domestic.


  8. few tons of uranium: With international commerce now available, uranium can be imported. If India imports, coal why not uranium. make a calculation on the total mining per MW of coal and uranium and one would get the scale on mining needed for uranium. Most of the countries that have uranium do not have nuclear power and most of the countries that have significant nuclear power do not have uranium. So it is a different ball game. Incidentally, no nuclear activity goes on at mines. so there can not be significant radiation problems there. The uranium which was underground is mined.
    we should see the energy gdp correlation to the left that is at low levels of energy consumption in India. the co relationship upto say about 2000 kg of oil equivalent the relationship is well established. Incidentally the share of electricity in the energy consumption needs to be rechecked.
    The core melt is the worst accident for nuclear designers. There are four reactor meltdowns that have happened. The consequence: No fatality no body in public domain exposed to harmful radiation. This is nuclear safety robustness. On the other hand some 25,000 deaths due to Tsunami directly and 300,000 displacements. We need to correctly understand the severity of earthquake and Tsunami.


  9. “..Kalam’s plank has been, mainly, an emotive appeal on nationalistic-chauvinistic lines, with a thin veneer of ‘science, technology and development’ rhetoric. He has rubbished the safety concerns raised by protestors in the familiar terms of the sacred goal of ‘development.’ Saying that ‘fear is a disease that kills development,’ he asks if we will allow a tsunami at the Fukushima Daichi plant in Japan to blight India’s future?
    In an insult to people’s intelligence, he has chosen to play down the Fukushima disaster that has shaken the world, citing it as an instance of efficient containment of a potential disaster rather than the biggest nuclear disaster in history! His plank is that no lives were lost at Fukushima. What Kalam deliberately plays down is the real significance of Fukushima. Fukushima shook people’s confidence in the safety claims of nuclear plants, worldwide. Kalam tries to tell us the Fukushima plant was based on outdated technology; but it is well known that the people of Japan had been assured several times by the Kalams of their own country, that the Fukushima reactors had the best safety and backup mechanisms capable of dealing with any quake or tsunami. When the tsunami actually hit one of the reactors, the safety and cooling mechanisms broke down and a meltdown was imminent. In desperation the Japanese experts were reduced to using huge amounts of sea water to try and cool the reactor down.
    Months later, the leakages continue, and it is absurd to claim that Fukushima is out of danger when the worst is yet to unfold. The problem of safe disposal of the contaminated cooling water and radioactive waste is still an unsolved problem; and it is still not known if the reactor fuel has penetrated the ground. The people of the affected areas are yet to be able to return home.
    Kalam even belittles the effects of the Hiroshima-Nagasaki bombing – wanting us to accept research sponsored by the US (responsible for the bombing!) as ‘impartial’ and ‘scientific’ evidence that the effects of a nuclear disaster remain confined only to one generation!
    In the wake of the lessons of Fukushima, countries like Germany and Belgium have already had to announce a phase-out of nuclear energy. All over the world, countries are having to bow to the growing popular opinion against nuclear energy, which has proved to have huge hidden costs and unsurpassed potential for massive human tragedy. Kalam undermines his own credibility by asking Indians to ignore and laugh away the lessons of Fukushima.
    Kalam is being projected by the nuclear establishment and captive sections of the media as a voice of ‘science and sanity’, who has branded the protesting villagers were ‘ill-informed and misguided’ and beset with irrational fears. When we see Kalam invoking ‘Tamil pride,’ and belittling nuclear disasters by comparing nuclear plants with historical monuments and nuclear disasters with dam bursts, one wonders who is ill-informed! Amusingly, the ‘scientist’ Kalam has chosen to invoke the bogey of the ‘foreign hand,’ saying he suspects “geo-political and market forces” to be behind the stir! To the naked eye, the only ‘foreign’ and ‘market’ forces in Koodankulam are representatives of the Russian nuclear industry!
    As a last resort, Kalam has mooted a 200 crore proposal for local development. It is a tragic irony that hospitals, schools and colleges, and development of agriculture and fisheries, that ought to be a right of the local people, is being proffered only as a bribe in exchange for exposing their lives and livelihood to the dangers of a nuclear disaster!
    Far from being ‘ill-informed,’ the Koodankulam protestors know that Russian state agencies have, in a recent report, admitted that the Russian industry’s nuclear plants are especially vulnerable to natural and man-made disasters. They know, that raising the height of the reactors to put them out of the probable reach of a tsunami (as Kalam assures) will only make them more vulnerable in case of a quake. They are unwilling to gamble their lives in a game of chance, being forced to live on the edge of a potential Fukushima. They know that while Kalam moots India’s unique Thorium reserves as a potential source of energy, the prestigious and well-funded nuclear research in independent India is yet to come up with a viable way of harnessing thorium reserves to produce anywhere near the levels of energy that had been projected and promised.
    The Koodankulam movement has remained undaunted by the heightened government propaganda against it. A national march to Koodankulam is planned in the coming week. The Indo-US Nuke Deal – ushered in by a dubious and corrupt vote in Parliament – paved the way for nuclear expansion efforts whereby the NPCIL plans to set up 32 imported reactors all over India by 2032. The Nuke Liability Bill protects the nuclear suppliers from bearing the burden of compensation and clean-up in case of a disaster. Now, a success of the people’s movement at Koodankulam offers a ray of hope for the country whose rulers are hell-bent on putting its citizens at the mercy of the global nuclear industry and its huge attendant dangers to humanity itself. Democratic forces must extend all support to the movement and ensure people’s victories at Koodankulam, Jaitapur, Mithi Virdi, Fatehpur and all other sites of resistance.”
    Quoted from ML Update Wkly No 46/2011


  10. One agrees with all those immensely valued inputs by Dr Gadekar; but certain things said by him might need a little more scientific explanation. Let me put my problem like this :
    Dr APJ Kalam’s contention about thorium, though by way of passing mention while placing ‘nuclear options ’ as a generic category, is seen rephrased here by Dr Gadekar as follows:
    “India has huge deposits of Thorium which is considered to be the nuclear fuel of the future.‎ ‏Thorium has many advantages over uranium:‭ ‬produces eight times more energy for the same mass,‭ ‬has a less toxic waste stream,‭ ‬is more‭ ‬abundantly available”.
    Response by Dr Gadekar:
    “(The thorium carrot)
    The great advantages of thorium and especially our large deposits were well known even fifty years ago when Dr Homi Bhabha first formulated the three stage nuclear programme.‭ ‬The third stage envisaged‭ ‬large scale utilization of thorium deposits within‭ ‬20‭ ‬to‭ ‬25‭ ‬years.‭ ‬Even after‭ ‬fifty years we still seem to be at least‭ ‬25‭ ‬years away from being able to‭ ‬realize‭ ‬this dream.‭ ‬Neither Americans,‭ ‬or the French,‭ ‬Russians,‭ ‬Canadians,‭ ‬British,‭ ‬Japanese,‭ ‬etc.‭ ‬seem interested in thorium technology.‭ (‬Why should they since it is we who are sitting on the deposits.‭) Secondly thorium based electricity costs are likely to be even greater than those based on uranium which are already uncompetitive in the marketplace. ‬With nobody to buy,‭ ‬beg,‭ ‬borrow or steal from,‭ ‬thorium dreams are likely to remain just dreams in the foreseeable future.”
    One might ask why pretty much little in this regard is being stated by Dr Gadekar ? ie; we are not sufficiently given clues whether he is seriously accepting or rejecting the thorium dream, albeit a dream! Will not a lay person see this ambiguity as a sign of apathy toward earnest pursuit of science? This branch of intervention on the strength of thorium reserve as reportedly conceived by Dr Homi Baba, is said to have made him fully optimistic of ‘peaceful use of atom’ energy. The story goes like it as though his dreams were dashed unfairly and in a detrimental manner to the sovereign interests of India! One wonders when will we really able to have the truly scientific cross check of all these, with the help of people- oriented scientists like Dr Gadekar!


  11. Please see the following extract from an article by M. V Ramana and another in today’s Hindu on the issue of thorium, which dr gadekar did not elaborate, as pointed out by Venugopalan.

    About thorium

    The gap between pronouncements and achievement is the largest where thorium is concerned. In 1970, the Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) explained that although “the programme [had] slipped badly,” the country would be in a position to start setting up thorium reactors in about 15 years. Forty years later, there is no thorium reactor in existence, and there is yet no solution to several serious technical problems with the thorium cycle.

    Unlike uranium, thorium itself cannot be used as reactor fuel, but must be put through a nuclear reactor to first produce a fissile isotope of uranium, uranium-233. Uranium-233 has three key properties. First, it can be used to make nuclear weapons, being superior, in some respects, to weapon-grade uranium (lower critical mass) and plutonium (smaller spontaneous fission rate). Second, uranium-233 is produced in conjunction with uranium-232, which emits energetic gamma rays, and this is the main reason it has not been used to make weapons. The second property is even more problematic when uranium-233 is used as nuclear fuel, because it makes fuel fabrication hazardous to the health of workers and expensive. Thus, the very properties that make thorium unsuitable for weaponisation pose a greater hurdle to energy generation. Third, the DAE’s plans for producing uranium-233 in bulk involve the use of plutonium-fuelled fast breeder reactors which, when compared to heavy water reactors, carry a significantly greater risk of catastrophic accidents and produce much more expensive electricity. For some or all of these reasons, most countries have abandoned thorium; India is a leader in this field by virtue of being one of the only participants.


  12. I think the following is relevant as a comment on the specific responses by a few on Dr Gadekar’s article, as well as a general observation on certain comment writers.

    A note on Obnoxious comments
    “Why are people responding to objections raised by activists against nuclear power intolerant to views different from theirs? People without tolerance to ideas are the most dangerous people, who have potentiality to destroy the world. They use threatening, indecent language and question the ‘patriotism’of opponents to nuclear power!
    Facts are facts and there are objective, scientific methods to verify them. Why are people getting angry and harping on cheap patriotic sentiments while they have no real point to substantiate their prejudiced view? If a major nuclear accident happens, who in this country will honestly own its responsibility? Even now, It is not that we didn’t have any accidents; but that the people in charge of our nuclear affairs were somewhat successful in their cover up,aided by the outmoded 1962 Act, which allows secrecy. Sitting comfortably on your easy chairs and pretending to be the guardians of our energy security, you can don the mantle of a concerned citizen, insult, call names, and throw mud on the struggling people of Kudankulam, who gather in thousands,even leaving work, as they really see danger ahead, and as they want to live and let others too live at any cost.A guy, enthusiastic about everything that is nuclear could easily dismiss even Fukushima ( but the Japanese cannot afford to do that.; nor can concerned human beings anywhere in the world.).Time will tell such people who are really the ”anti social fundamentalists” ( the epithet used by a comment writer against Antinuclear activists involved in Kudankulam)- people who support nuclear power just for the sake of a few Megawatts of electricity or those who oppose it on the basis of human, social, economic and ecological reasons, which have been vindicated ever since a nuclear reactor was set up for the first time.”

    “In Kudamkulam the genuine issue is not related to nuclear fear. Mr. Surendra Gadekar and like minded people exploit the peoples’ sentiments and try to explore money. Behind the Kudamkulam drama money is the only reason.”
    This is a comment published on11-11-2011 by one Jose Paul in response to Dr. Surendra Gadekar’s article ,( not in Kaffila, but in Dianuke. org )‘The Darkness Beyond the Gateway: Dr. Kalam’s Nuclear Dream.’
    Even though such comments are coming from people totally blind to facts and too selfish to have any consideration or even civility to others, they should not go un-replied, Responses, often irrelevant , intolerant and irresponsible, such as the one quoted above are typical of a class of net users and I have noticed it on many occasions, when serious discussions take place on any subject. People try to cow down others , not by facts but by heaping insults , abuses and obscene language. Perhaps this is the new ‘in thing’; but, being an old-timer, I cannot stomach it. To oppose an idea, even vehemently, one need not malign an individual. Perhaps this is part of the culture of arrogance, incidental to the new affluence, associated with the sort of ‘development’, envisaged by nuclearistion and other similar technocentric fads.
    I think it is relevant to quote my own response to the tirade against Dr. Gadekar and others:
    ‘’Dr. MP Parameswaran, Dr. Surendra Gadekar etc are people, highly qualified and competent to comment on nuclear issues. You say they want to make money by being antinuclear?This is the most stupid remark I have ever heard. They had high positions in our Government service. They had position, pay, perks and prestige; they could have clung to their posts as most of the other officers do. It is their adherence to truth and commitment to people that made them resign their coveted posts and champion the antinuclear cause .It is amusing, though very irritating, to see these greedy folk, who value everything only in terms of monetary gains, trying in the most unjust way, to attribute financial motives to these scientists who have done great service to our society, by sacrificing personal gains and ‘glory’. There are several anti nuclear scientists in the world, not only Parameswaran and Gadekar, committed deeply to humanity at large rather than to a narrow-minded nuclear coterie which takes the world to ransom for profits. They are trying to infuse sanity into the wrong headed policies of our so-called experts. We have to be thankful to these scientists. Let us be decent enough not to insult them at least. Many people have become too blinded by greed for money to see reason and to listen to the voices of wisdom. It is a pity that the tribe of these morons is prospering in our country. The morons cannot even imagine that there are people in this world, who are working to serve fellow beings and to derive satisfaction out of it and not to earn money.’’
    Ramachandran. K


  13. Dr. APJ Kalam is a great Indian, a patriot, a nationalist like whom seldom appear on the horizon of India. India is seriously deficient in energy production. Nuclear energy is the cheapest means to overcome this deficiency. Yes, there are dangers involved with radiation leak. And that is where extreme precautions need to be taken. But nuclear energy is a must. Without that India does not have a great future. Every medicine has an adverse effect. It does not mean that a patient should be allowed to die just because of that. Who is this Surendra Gadekar? Is he really a physicist of international renown? What physics has he done? Numerous PhDs from India come to US to do postdoctoral research. Those who do miserably return back on a similar position in India. Dr. Surendra Gadekar is seems to be one of them. He is involved in an activity that would impede progress of India if given too much importance. It is damn easy to gain name recognition by becoming a Surendra Gadekar, but a life time dedication and talent to become an APJ Kalam.


    1. Ram Sharma, have you heard of a teeny weeny little thing called a ‘fact’? If you have, could you please write out a point-by-point refutation of Dr. Gadekar’s article, as he has taken the pains to, himself, vis a vis APJ’s article? Idle speculation on his location and intentions is a game that many can play, so I speculate here that you are writing on this forum simply to gain recognition in a “damn easy” way, whereas Dr. Gadekar has worked all his life in the field of science. Further, your medical-pharmaceutical analogy is a little disturbing, to say the least, given that when you assume the entire nation to be a body, the adverse effects of a nuclear dose would be the lives of a few thousand citizens. Willing to pay that cost? You must forgive some of us for not being so.


  14. Actually what this means is that the more energy you use,‭ ‬the richer you are.

    I stopped reading at this point.‭ That there is a correlation between the GNP per capita and energy consumption per capita is undeniable. But of course, correlation is not causation and to the extent there is one, it is the other way around. That is, the richer a country, the more energy (per capita) it uses. This is hardly surprising. The richer nations use more sophisticated products, all of which have to be manufactured. And manufacture uses energy: typically, the more “sophisticated” a product, the more energy it is going to use for manufacture.

    Now one can question whether “becoming a richer nation” is an objective we should pursue. There are no easy answers. It is true that technological advancement has its drawbacks — pollution and all that — but no one can deny its benefits either. The fact that we are now living longer is an obvious one but sometimes the benefits have been very unintended. For instance, Jeremy Greenwood and his co-authors argue in a paper titled “Engines of Growth” that one consequence of innovations like washing machines was that it freed American women’s times and thus indirectly enabled them to pursue other activities. In this context, it is worth remembering that beyond the upper and middle classes, the lives of the majority of our women *is* drudgery: all the tiresome activities like hunting for water and bringing it back (miles in some cases), washing clothes etc. fall to women.

    There is a case against nuclear power undoubtedly but we should remember that we will be using energy (for living, for manufacture) anyway. If it is not nuclear, then it will be something else. One thing that I dislike about this debate is the very easy invocation of “green” energy as an alternative. But green energy has problems too. Even leaving aside the question of whether solar or wind energy can enable us to produce energy on the scale that we are likely to need, we should remember that solar panels and wind turbines do not fall from heaven; they have to be manufactured. All this needs energy too. At the end of the day, you cannot transform raw materials into manufactured goods that we can use without using energy.

    The case for or against nuclear power therefore cannot be made in absolute terms; it has to be made by looking at our likely energy needs and a careful consideration of the alternatives. In my opinion, neither the former president and his co-author nor Dr. Gadekar do this. I may be in a minority but I think Dr. Gadekar’s piece is really badly written. I await the brickbats.


  15. Sorry for the follow-up, but the Greenwood paper (coauthors: Ananth Seshadri and Mehmet Yorukocoglu) is *Engines of Liberation.* This is the abstract:

    Electricity was born at the dawn of the last century. Households were inundated with a flood of new consumer durable goods. What was the impact of this consumer durable goods revolution? It is argued here that the consumer goods revolution liberated women from the home. To analyze this hypothesis, a Beckerian model of household production is developed. Households must decide whether to adopt the new technologies or not, and whether married woman should work. Can such a model explain the rise in married female labor-force participation that occurred in the last century? Yes.


  16. Dear MH Prasadu,

    Please do not take the entire nation for granted. This was the response from a friend of mine: “I wasn’t aware of it much – Until Kalam said “it is OK”, I had no real fear:-)”

    A good additional read: “D. Raghunandan of the All India Peoples’ Science Network argues for an independent review of nuclear safety measures and audit said to be concluded by the Atomic Energy establishment of the Indian government..” (Interview)


  17. Read this article with a sincere intent to understand the debate. I dont know who Dr. Gadekar is. But since he is trying to rebut the claims of Dr. Kalam, I assumed he is a knowledgeable man.

    However, I am disappointed to see deliberate mischief and wrong play of numbers used in this response at a couple of instances. For example, when Dr. Kalam mentioned that advanced nations use nuclear power, Dr. Gadekar somehow interprets it as ‘nations with highest percapita GDP have more than 30% share of nuclear energy in their total energy’. Based on this he says that Qatar, Luxembourg, Singapore, Norway, and Brunei don’t figure in the table. I wonder if they figured, would it have given him more confidence than seeing US, UK, Russia, France and Canada there.

    Similarly his conclusion that there will be a nuclear accident in every 4.5 years by counting Fukushima as 4 accidents and doing other gimmickry is plain mischief meant to mislead. He takes data of 4 accidents in 6 decades and infers from it that it translates to an average of an accident every 4.5 years. Why mislead?

    We read these articles to understand the real issues. I am saddened to see a lack of honesty and urge to criticize everything in this article. While many points mentioned by Dr. Gadekar may be correct, the mischief at some places makes me doubt the genuineness of the entire article.


    1. Dr Surendra Gadekar has sent the following reply:

      It is no wonder that the commentator has not heard of me while s/he has of Dr Kalam. Dr Kalam is not only a famous scientist but has also been a very respected President of the republic. Therefore, the burden of not misinforming the readers falls even more on his broad shoulders than on mine. Of course, I too cannot be allowed to “indulge in deliberate mischief and a wrong play of numbers”. Let us see if I have actually done so.
      To avoid further confusion, let me quote directly from his article in the Hindu (November 6, 2011)

      “The Indian population is misled when it is said that some Western nations have ended their nuclear programme, or that Japan is re-considering nuclear power plant expansion. Study the accompanying Table, which shows what share of energy these advanced nations are generating by means of nuclear power. The study indicates that most of the prosperous nations are extracting about 30-40 per cent of power from
      nuclear power and it constitutes a significant part of their clean energy portfolio, reducing the burden of combating climate change and the health hazards associated with pollution.”

      This is accompanied by the following table (Please see Slide 4)

      As anyone can clearly see by looking at column 3 of this table, the only countries with more than 30 percent share of their electricity coming from nuclear power are France, Republic of Korea and Ukraine as I mentioned in my reply to Dr Kalam’s article. None of the countries with the exception of France, that the comentator considers “advanced” (US, UK, Russia, or Canada) get anywhere near 30% of their electricity from nuclear power. If the commentator would carefully read Dr Kalam’s article, s/he would realise that the word used is prosperous and not advanced. I know of no better criterion of deciding “prosperous nations” than to look at their GDP per capita adjusted by purchasing power parity. On this criteria, Qatar, Luxembourg, Singapore, Norway, and Brunei do happen to be the the most prosperous nations on earth and none of them produces nuclear energy. Although since Luxembourg imports most of its electricity from France, one can say that it is significant;y dependent upon nuclear electricity.

      The disappointment that the commentator feels “to see deliberate mischief and wrong play of numbers” would be better applied to Dr Kalam’s sentence that “most of the prosperous na-
      tions are extracting about 30- 40 per cent of power from nuclear power. They do nothing of the sort.

      The commentator finds my counting Fukushima as four accidents objectionable. He/she feels that they should count as one. Four separate explosions at different times in different reactor buildings, due to different causes should count as separate accidents by any sensible reckoning. He/she also finds my small calculation of reactor years of operation as gimmicry! I don’t see how one can make any calculation of accident probabilities without taking into account the number of reactors involved and their ages. However, even if one counts Fukushima as one accident and continues to disregard the Windscale nuclear fire of 1957 as Dr Kalam and Singh have done, all the difference it makes to chances of an accident is that instead of once every 4.5 years we will have a nuclear accident once every eight years.

      The least one would expect of the readers of this site, especially those who say that, “We read these articles to understand the real issues” is that they would take the trouble of actually reading the article properly before rushing to comment impunging the honesty of the writer.


  18. Promoters of Nuclear Energy are the biggest terrorists…….millions of times bigger terrorists than Taliban or Al Qaeda.

    Recently a Global Summit was held to find out ways to secure Nuclear Material…..To find out ways to prevent Nuclear Material from falling into the hands of terrorists.

    What a Joke!

    The “Bigger Terrorists” are trying to prevent Nuclear Material from falling into the hands of “Smaller Terrorists”.

    Nuclear Material has always been in the hands of terrorists……People who produced nuclear material – people who transported it all over the world – people who promoted its use in Power Plants, Industrial Activity and Weapons are the biggest terrorists on earth……Nuclear Material has been in the hands of terrorists ever since it was created.

    It was not Taliban or Al Qaeda that produced thousands of tonnes of Nuclear Material and Nuclear Waste that has poisoned the entire planet for thousands of years…..It was Nuclear Scientists and Nuclear Industry.

    The Mega Disasters of Chernobyl and Fukushima were not caused by Taliban or Al Qaeda…….They were caused by promoters of Nuclear Energy.

    Even if Taliban and Al Qaeda try their level best they will not be able to create Mega Disasters as big as Chernobyl or Fukushima.

    And if they do manage to succeed the blame will lie more on people who created Nuclear Material and brought it into existence.

    In Industrial Society all Political Parties, all Governments become Eco-Killers, Eco-Murderers and Eco-Terrorists………Tamil Nadu Government/ AIADMK is no exception.

    All Political Parties in India and elsewhere in the world are promoting Growth Rate, Economy Rate & GDP which requires setting up of more and more Power Plants…..more and more Nuclear Power Plants…..thereby destroying ecosystems in the name of Progress, Growth and Development.

    Political Parties might oppose some Industrial Projects when they are in opposition but when they come to power they approve/ promote all Industrial Projects.

    Stop Kudankulam / Jaitapur Nuclear Plants in India….Stop Nuclear Plants everywhere in the world.

    Development is Destruction……..Development is Destruction.

    “Growth Rate” – “Economy Rate” – “GDP”
    These are figures of “Ecocide”.
    These are figures of “Crimes against Nature”.
    These are figures of “Destruction of Ecosystems”.
    These are figures of “Insanity, Abnormality and Criminality”.

    Promoters of Growth Rate, Economy Rate & GDP are the biggest Killers, Murderers & Terrorists on earth.

    Promoters of Nuclear Industry and Technology are the biggest criminals…….the biggest Killers, Murderers and Terrorists on earth.

    “Demand for energy is rising…..therefore we need more Power Plants…..more Nuclear Power Plants”.

    Who made this rule…..Which Idiot made this rule?????

    Rising demand for energy has destroyed all ecosystems.

    Excessive use of energy has destroyed all ecosystems.

    Demand for energy has to be minimized…….Not fulfilled.

    This planet can provide energy for simple living…..not for consumerist living.

    This planet can provide resources for simple living…..not for consumerist living.

    This planet can provide energy & resources for food, clothing and shelter….not for thousands of consumer goods and services.

    People who claim that “nuclear energy is safe” should be bathed with nuclear waste.

    People who claim “nuclear energy is safe” should be force-fed a spoonful of nuclear material every day.

    People who claim that “nuclear energy is safe” should be forced to live in Chernobyl and Fukushima.

    Claiming that nuclear plants are Not Harmful is like claiming that the Sun is Not Hot.

    Height of Insanity…………Insanity raised to the power of Infinity.

    Promoters of Kudankulam Project say it cannot be stopped because thousands of crores have already been spent.

    A few thousand crores is nothing.

    If Kudankulam Project is not stopped it is going to kill ecosystems which are priceless…….invaluable……incalculable……beyond price.

    If Kudankulam Project is not stopped it is going to poison Air, Water, Soil, Animals, Plants and Humans for thousands of years.


    Nuclear Experts giving a clean chit to Kudankulam Project is like….

    America giving clean chit to invasion of Iraq and Afghanistan……Monsanto giving clean chit to GM crops…..Union Carbide giving clean chit to Warren Anderson…..Rapists giving clean chit to Rape…..Murderers giving clean chit to Murder…..Alcoholics giving clean chit to Alcohol…..Smokers giving clean chit to Cigarettes.

    Nuclear Experts will always give clean chit to nuclear projects……..always……. always……always.

    Nuclear Experts will always give approval to nuclear projects……..always……. always……always.

    Nuclear Experts will always give green signal to nuclear projects……..always……. always……always.

    There are thousands of nuclear professionals working with Nuclear Industry…….If nuclear projects are stopped they will become jobless/ unemployed…… they will always give approval to nuclear projects…….always…..always….always.

    Nuclear Material is harmful wherever it exists…..Nuclear Mines…Nuclear Power Plants… Nuclear Ships… Nuclear Submarines… Nuclear Satellites…Nuclear Weapons..…….its very existence is harmful.

    Exposure to Nuclear Radiation leads to….Cancer…Multiple Organ Failures…Genetic Mutations…Physical Deformities….Mental Abnormalities…..Death……For generations to come.

    Industrial Society continues to spread the blatant lie…..

    that another Chernobyl, another Fukushima will not happen,

    that another Gulf Oil Disaster, another Bhopal Gas Tragedy will not happen.

    Blatant lie, blatant lie….

    As long as industry exists industrial accidents will continue to occur ……They will only get bigger and bigger.

    Bigger the industry bigger the industrial accident.

    Nuclear material is the most dangerous, toxic and hazardous thing on earth.

    It was buried deep under the earth.

    Man brought it to the surface, refined it to create thousands of tonnes of the most toxic substance, that will remain radioactive for thousands of years – and is using it all over the world.

    Once created nuclear material keeps poisoning humans, animals, plants, air, water and soil for thousands of years.

    Nuclear material has poisoned /contaminated the entire planet.
    There are 500 Nuclear Power Plants, Hundreds of Nuclear Weapons producing sites, thousands of Nuclear Research Centers, Hundreds of Nuclear Powered Ships and Submarines, Hundreds of Nuclear Powered Satellites.

    The land, the water, the air……. The entire planet has been poisoned.

    Nuclear material is the most dangerous material – it should not even be created – it should not even be brought into existence.

    Everyone comes to know about Aeroplane Accidents, Car Accidents and Train Accidents ………because they are visible.

    Nuclear Accidents are different…… people only come to know about Nuclear Accidents which happen with big explosions. People do not come to know about silent Nuclear/ Radiation Leakages because they are invisible and can only be known to people who have access to Radiation Monitoring Equipment. These leakages don’t get reported in the media because people who run nuclear facilities are not going to report themselves – they are not going to report their own crimes.

    Thousands of accidents involving nuclear/ radiation leakages are happening every day but they are never reported. Soil, Water and Air are getting contaminated with nuclear radiation at thousands of places around the world every day.

    People who produce nuclear material – people who transport it all over the world – people who promote its use in Power Plants and Industrial Activity are the biggest criminals – biggest killers, murderers and terrorists on earth.

    The Government is accusing Activists of using Foreign Funds for Kudankulam Protest / Agitation.

    If the Government can take Billions of Dollars of Foreign Aid to destroy Ecosystems in the name of Progress, Growth & Development then why can’t NGO’s and Activists take Foreign Aid / Assistance to Save the Ecosystems????

    Stop Kudankulam / Jaitapur Nuclear Plants in India……Stop Nuclear Plants everywhere in the world.
    “Industrial Society Destroys Mind and Environment”


  19. A lot of water has passed under the bridge since this article in 2011. I’ve always been a proponent of nuclear energy but I would like to know Dr.Gadekar’s or any other expert’s opinion on Small Modular Reactors (SMR) which are seeing increased interest from emerging economies like Morocco, Saudi Arabia etc. They are supposed to be much safer than conventional, old nuclear technology.
    Also, in the context of the Paris Agreement and the mandate to limit temperature rise to 1.5 degree Centigrade, the role of nuclear energy is evolving for sure.


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