Chennai | Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa today urged the Centre to recommence production in Kudankulam Unit-I, now under maintenance, and sought coordinated action among Southern States to neutralise the Maoist menace.
At the 26th Southern Zonal Council (SZC) meet, chaired by Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh at Vijayawada today, she drew the Centre’s attention to the Kudankulam nuclear plant and that of neighbouring States to the need for coordinated work to counter Maoists.
Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant started commercial operations on December 31 last and has been shut down for maintenance from June 24 this year.
The Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd is yet to clearly indicate when the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant Unit-I will recommence production, she said in her speech, read out by Tamil Nadu Finance Minister O Panneerselvam.
We therefore request that the NPCIL may be instructed to recommence production in Kudankulam Unit-I early to meet the Tamil Nadu grid demand, she said.
Tamil Nadu was allotted 563 MW out of the 1000 MW produced by Unit-I of Kudankulam plant.
The State has been informed that Kudankulam Unit-II is undergoing final stages of commissioning activities, she said adding, we request the Centre to expedite commercial operation in Unit-II, so that another 563 MW of power can be added to the Tamil Nadu grid at the earliest.
Referring to movement of Maoist cadres in Tamil Nadu-Kerala-Karnataka tri-junction (along the Western Ghats falling in three States including Nilgiris District in Tamil Nadu), she said Tamil Nadu has been taking proactive steps to curb the menace.
Maoist movements have been sighted in the tri-junction area since 2013 and Tamil Nadu has been taking proactive steps to curb this menace.
Stressing on concerted and coordinated action by all three States on both security and development fronts, she said it would ensure that Maoist activity is not allowed to take root in this area.
Combing operations have been intensified and five Maoists were arrested and local police stations have been strengthened and forces have been augmented to meet the challenges, she said.
Senior Maoist leader Rupesh alias Jogi, who headed the Western Ghats Special Zonal Committee, and four others were arrested in Coimbatore in May this year.
My government has already requested the Ministry of Home Affairs to include the Nilgiris District in the Security Related Expenditure (SRE) list, Jayalalithaa said.
Request has been made to the Centre to reimburse security expenditure to the tune of Rs 2.4 crore and the sanction Rs 10.11 crore under Integrated Action Plan to create infrastructure and service facilities for security agencies, she said.
All collectors of districts adjoining Western Ghats have been sensitised to conduct mass contact meetings in tribal villages and to address their grievances relating to livelihood and infrastructure.
Tamil Nadu is also implementing Special programmes in Dharmapuri, Krishnagiri, Madurai, Theni, Dindigul and The Nilgiris districts to develop the remote backward areas in such regions, she said.
On providing Distress Alert Transmitters to boats, she appealed to the Centre to extend 75 per cent subsidy to ensure more fishermen could avail of the scheme.
She urged the Centre to sanction funds liberally to install more artificial reefs (now funded by the State and implemented by the Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute) in Tamil Nadu coast to enhance marine resources.
An advisory body, the Southern Zonal Council meet discussed several issues involving the member States -Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Kerala, Telangana and Puducherry- and the Centre.
A copy of the speech was made available to the media here.
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