Nuclear protesters seek martyr's intervention reporter, Thiruvananthapuram, India

December 3, 2012

Protesters opposing the controversial Koodankulam nuclear power plant in Tamil Nadu were among an estimated 100,000 people who attended the beatification ceremony yesterday of Devasahayam Pillai.

The Hindu-born Indian lay martyr, who was persecuted and shot dead in the 18th century after having converted to Catholicism, was yesterday declared “Blessed” during the ceremony held, in Nagercoil city, in Kottar diocese.

Among the devotees who joined the event were activists seeking the scrapping of Koodankulam nuclear power plant which is due to be commissioned soon.

“I came to Nagercoil to pray for the shutdown of the nuclear plant. We have been fighting against it for so long,” said Shouri Ammal, who comes from Idinthakarai, a village close to the plant.

We have staged several indefinite hunger strikes and laid siege to the plant but now only “divine intervention can save us,” she said.