PM allays fears over Kaiga

PM allays fears over Kaiga

“There is nothing to worry (about the incident). A probe is being conducted,” Singh told journalists on-board his special aircraft on Sunday night on his return from the nine-day tour of the US and Trinidad and Tobago.  Notwithstanding Singh’s assurance, MPs on Monday urged the Centre to ensure fool-proof security at vital installations, which include 18 nuclear power plants.

Raising the issue in the Rajya Sabha during zero hour, BJP member Kalraj Mishra said past accidents at the Tarapur and Kalpakkam nuclear power stations indicated the authorities’ glaring ignorance of the security and safety of such installations.

The government on Sunday had said the radioactive contamination of a drinking water unit in Kaiga was possibly the handiwork of some “mischief-makers”. A probe is on to identify the culprits who will be charged under the Atomic Energy Act.  Top officials of the Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) hinted at the possibility of the involvement of a “disgruntled scientist” in mixing the radioactive tritium with drinking water.

Referring to DAE hints, S S Ahluwalia, deputy Leader of the BJP, said such “disgruntled scientists” could become an easy tool in the hands of terrorists.

Mishra said nuclear plants were on the hit list of terrorists, and that any laxity in their security would prove costly.

The Kaiga complex houses three 220 MWe operational nuclear plants. The fourth one is in an advanced stage of completion. While Kaiga-1 is shut due to annual maintenance, Kaiga-2 and 3 are functioning normally.