Mumbai, Jan 11 (Agencies): The Jaitapur nuclear project-affected people have decided to boycott the open house meeting to be held by Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan to discuss issues pertaining to the 9,900 MW power plant in Konkan.
 
Schools in the project area in Ratnagiri district, around 370 km from here, remained shut on Monday and Tuesday as a mark of protest against the project, activist Praveen Gavankar said.

"Around 2,500 students from 70 schools in the area did not attend classes in protest," he said, adding schools will not celebrate Republic Day as well to register their protest.

Nuclear scientists, political parties, leaders of protesting groups and social organisations are expected to attend the January 18 meeting convened by Chavan.

Gavankar said the open house date clashed with the local festival, Bhagwatichi yatra (religious congregation of Goddess Bhagwati) in Madban village.

"From kindergarten to high schools, around 70 schools with nearly 2,500 students remained shut in 22 villages, including Madhban, Mithgawane, Karel, Niweli and Ansure," he said.

A team of Shiv Sena legislators last month visited the project site to express their solidarity with project-affected people and to oppose the Jaitapur plant.

Gavankar said radiation from the power plant may affect the ancient Vijaydurg Fort, five km from the project site.