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Dec 15, 2012 at 01:36pm IST

Russian envoy terms anti-Kudankulam protests as 'gimmicks and games'

Chennai: Protests against the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project that have led to delay in its commissioning are 'gimmicks and ames' of those who do not want to see India emerge stronger, Russian ambassador to India Alexander M Kadakin has said. He also said Friday night the first KNPP unit is almost ready and second one will be ready within six months.

"But as regards pressure from protestors and from other people, these are all gimmicks and games. The games by those who do not want to see India strong, who don't want India and Tamil Nadu to have really much power," the envoy, who was here on Friday to attend 40th anniversary of Russian Centre of Science and Culture, said.

Early this week, the Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited had said the commercial operation of the 1,000 MW first unit of the controversy-ridden Indo-Russian project was expected by January next year.

Anti-KNPP protests are gimmicks: Russian envoy

Alexander Kadakin said the protests are 'games played by those who do not want to see India strong.'

It also said commercial operation of the second unit had also been fixed for August 2013. Anti-nuclear activists, spearheaded by People's Movement Against Nuclear Energy, have resorted to a series of protests including 'sea siege' of the plant and demanding its scrapping, citing safety concerns.

Commissioning of the first unit was originally scheduled for December last year but it has been delayed due to protests.