Solidarity with the Disaster Affected People of Japan
Resistance to the Disastrous Policies of the Government of India
INVITATION FOR CANDLE LIGHT VIGIL AT INDIA GATE
6pm – 7pm Friday 18 MARCH 2011
A group of civil society members met in Delhi to take stock of the dangerous situation that has emerged due to triple disasters in Japan and also reflect on some response from civil society. All present felt the need to appeal to ourselves, to gather together in big numbers in the solidarity and protest Candle Light Vigil planned for 18th March 2011 [Friday] at India Gate, New Delhi from 6.00 pm to 7.00 pm. Let us come together to save our lives, our right to live and to secure a nuclear disaster free future for our children. This is also to appeal to all citizens all over India, to express solidarity to the disaster affected people of Japan and to resist the dangerous nuclear policies of Government of India.
All of us are totally devastated by the triple disasters – earthquake, tsunami and radiation from the nuclear plants- that stuck the people of Japan. On 11th March 2011, when the earthquake stuck Japan all of us took it as one of the many tremors that some parts of the world go through. But the after effect of this earthquake as tsunami and now the devastating nuclear disaster is even more horrible. It is reported that local government officials in Fukushima say 190 people have been exposed to some radiation. An American warship, has detected low levels of radiation at a distance of 100 miles (161km) from the Fukushima plant. The toll had risen to at least 1,700 deaths. As many as 10,000 people were missing in the town of Minamisanriku in Miyagi prefecture. There were also reports that the hourly radiation levels at the damaged Japanese nuclear plant are increasing the risk of developing cancer for anyone exposed to the leak. The Japanese authorities say only low levels of radiation have been detected outside the plant. The International Atomic Energy Agency has described it as a level four event. It is also reported that with censorship of news, the government has stepped in and provides only partial information and the people are at a loss.
In this depressing and devastating situation, we cannot do anything. All of us feel the need to gather together and mourn the death of many people who lost their lives in the triple disasters that stuck Japan. We also want to express our solidarity with those who are affected in innumerable ways by these disasters. We also recommit our resolve to build a symbiotic relationship with nature.
Now when a disaster of this grave nature has stuck Japan, a country which follows rules and regulations, adheres to safety norms, sticks to standards and is transparent and accountable to its citizens, what would happen in a country like India where the rich and the powerful throw all these to the winds. We are aware that India, in aping the western model of development is going on constructing environmentally damaging projects like mega dams on high seismic zones. Whether it is Jaduguda or Jaitapur, all these have proved that we are sitting on many major disasters and yet telling ourselves that we are all safe and our safety measures are in place. We do not agree with our government’s selfish and self-protective posture post the earthquake and nuke radiation.
This calls for protesting against the nuclearisation in the country, in the region and in the world and press upon the governments, policy makers, scientist lobby and corporate lobby who continue to harp of nuclear energy over looking other conventional energy resources. We also demand a comprehensive regional policy and disaster management plan with a global approach.
Hence, it is an appeal from all of us to ourselves, to gather together in big numbers in the solidarity and protest Candle Light Vigil planned for 18th March 2011 [Friday] at India Gate, New Delhi from 6.00 pm to 7.00 pm.
Kindly circulate this information to everyone and invite everyone to be part of this solidarity and protest Candle Light Vigil. Kindly come with placards and banners that express our solidarity and register our protest against nuclearisation. Same appeal is made to friends in other parts of India.