At least 350 residents deprived of their homes due to the Fukushima nuclear meltdown in 2011 are set to file a class-action law suit against the Japanese government and the power plant’s operator, Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO), on March 11, the second anniversary of the disaster. Lawyers said that the plaintiffs will ask the Fukushima District Court to require both to reduce radiation levels in the area to levels as those before the accident.
“The government promoted nuclear power as a national policy and has been closely involved with it,” lawyer Izutaro Managi said. He said that the government knew that there was danger of losing power due to a tsunami and yet it failed to perform its duty to prevent such an event from happening. He clarified that “this is a suit to recover a Fukushima with neither radiation nor nuclear power.” These complainants will also sue TEPCO for 50,000 yen (approx. $540) in compensation for every month that they have been displaced of their homes because of what had happened to the power plant.
Last year, a parliamentary report revealed that Fukushima was in fact caused by Japan’s culture of “reflexive obedience” and not just by the tsunami that hit the plant—thereby putting it in the category of a man-made disaster. TEPCO has admitted it played down known tsunami risks due to possible high costs in terms of politics, finance and reputation. The police were also said to have questioned a former head of the nuclear safety body and TEPCO executives for possible criminal charges that might be filed because of the Fukushima nuclear crisis.[via PressTV]