Home > In the Media > Soil testing begins at Jaitapur nuclear project site

Soil testing begins at Jaitapur nuclear project site

Sanjay Jog in Business Standard

March 07, 2011

Amid protests by villagers, various political parties and non-government organisations (NGOs), government-run Nuclear Power Corporation (NPC) has begun soil inspection work and construction of a fencing wall at the site of the proposed 10,000-Mw nuclear power project at Jaitapur in Maharashtra.

An NPC official, who had been to the project site last week with Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan, told Business Standard: “Soil analysis is essential before erection of the plant. This has been launched on 690 hectares of the total 938 ha of land. During the site inspection, the contracting agencies will dig boreholes and prepare a comprehensive report. In addition, construction of the boundary wall has started.”

After this, he said, NPC would start construction of a residential complex for company personnel. Later, it would undertake construction of health and educational complexes for project-affected persons and villagers near the project site.

The official said actual construction for the two European Pressurised Reactors (EPRs) of 1,650 Mw was expected to begin in the middle of 2012. The first phase is expected to be commissioned by 2017-18.

A state government official, who did not want to be named, said the government had accorded top priority for timely implementation of the project. “The chief minister visited the site last week and tried to remove doubts of villagers and project-affected people, especially on security and environment protection. Despite this, some political parties and NGOs are pursuing their agitation. The chief minister has also agreed to visit villages predominantly involved in fishing to address their grivances. One thing is clear: the government will make all efforts to maintain law and order,” the official said.

He justified the drive by the police to arrest some of the villagers. Narayan Rane, former CM and present industries minister, said he hoped the villagers would not continue their agitation based on incorrect facts circulated by some agencies.

Project opponents have decided to hold agitations to mobilise public opinion. They are preparing to file at least three petitions against the project.

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