Skip to main content

Modi "agrees" to US demand to change Indian nuclear laws to allow American companies to supply uranium

By Our Representative
President Barrack Obama is learnt to have extracted a major concession from Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who reportedly agreed to bring about a major change in india’s nuclear policy, which America believes is the key to reluctance of American companies to supply uranium to Indian nuclear power plants. If the policy changes, Gujarat’s proposed nuclear plant may be among the first “gainers”. An agreement to set up 6,000 MW nuclear power plant between US’ Westinghouse Corporation and the Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd (NPCIL) at near Mithi Virdi along the Saurashtra coast remains unimplemented because of inability to sort out “administrative” issues.
The Washington Times (September 30) reports that President Obama and his Indian counterpart may have pledged to cooperate on nuclear energy, but American specialists believe “Indian liability laws have made progress virtually impossible and have rendered moot a landmark 2008 agreement between the two countries.” It adds, “During his first trip to the US since assuming power Modi … expressed openness to changing his nation’s liability laws, a prerequisite to US-Indian cooperation on nuclear power moving forward.” There is no confirmation yet about this from India.
The daily says that a 2010 law passed in Indian Parliament may have “opened the door for US nuclear suppliers to do business in India, there has been virtually no progress over the past six years”, and the main reason behind this is that India’s liability laws make “suppliers, rather than operators, accountable for damages resulting from accidents at nuclear facilities.” It adds, “The liability law had the impact of shutting US companies out of the Indian market. It’s been a major stumbling block.”
The daily quotes Lisa Curtis, a senior research fellow in the Asian Studies Center at the conservative Heritage Foundation, to say that “there’s a lot of frustration in the US”. Another expert, Henry Sokolski, executive director of the Nonproliferation Policy Education Center, says, “We totally embarrassed ourselves with that deal, and we have to kind of act like it didn’t happen the way it seemed to have happened. We convinced ourselves that this was worth sort of bending the rules with regard to nuclear trade and nonproliferation”.
The daily says, “The two nations struck a historic nuclear energy deal in 2008, one that was heralded at the time as a breakthrough in US-Indian relations, but also criticized as a de facto endorsement of India’s nuclear weapons capability. It allowed American companies for the first time to build reactors in India, a potential boon for firms looking to expand to emerging markets. It also lifted a ban on uranium imports for India. In return, India agreed to allow international inspections of its nuclear facilities and vowed not to conduct future nuclear weapons tests.”
“Not only did the perceived benefits to American businesses not come to pass, but the agreement may have indirectly spurred Iranian and North Korean nuclear ambitions by signaling nations could refuse to sign international nuclear nonproliferation treaties and still receive the blessing of the US”, the daily says, quoting specialists, adding, “Even though the agreement was signed before either man came into office, Obama and Modi appear willing to continue trying to make the deal work.”

Comments

TRENDING

Nirma varsity demand for higher fees 'illegal', violates Article 14: Letter to Gujarat HC

Counterview Desk
Students of Gujarat’s top private institute, Nirma University, situated in the outskirts of Ahmedabad, in a letter to the Chief Justice the state High Court, have complained that the authorities are demanding “full fees” from students, without taking into account the “disproportionate impact” the lockdown has on the livelihood of students and families.

Buddhist shrines massively destroyed by Brahmanical rulers in "pre-Islamic" era: Historian DN Jha's survey

By Our Representative
Prominent historian DN Jha, an expert in India's ancient and medieval past, in his new book, "Against the Grain: Notes on Identity, Intolerance and History", in a sharp critique of "Hindutva ideologues", who look at the ancient period of Indian history as "a golden age marked by social harmony, devoid of any religious violence", has said, "Demolition and desecration of rival religious establishments, and the appropriation of their idols, was not uncommon in India before the advent of Islam".

Vulnerable to Covid-19, sharp rise in murder of Indian journalists during pandemic

By Nava Thakuria*
Vulnerability of working journalists in India is no way an alien issue as the populous country loses a number of working journalists to assailants as also medical emergencies. Even though there was only one casualty in the Indian media fraternity during the first half of 2020, who was targeted for journalistic work, India has begun witnessing an alarming number of media casualties during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Govt 'assures' Gujarat HC no action against MBBS students defying corona sahayak order

By Our Representative
The Gujarat government has assured the High Court that no action would be taken against Part-I and Part-II MBBS students of the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC)-controlled NHL Medical College and LG Hospital and Medical College. The assurance follows the direction by Justice SH Vora to the State government not to prosecute or initiate action against the students who were defying the college authorities’ order to work as corona sahayaks (helpers).

Renounced US citizenship to serve workers, tribals, Sudha Bharadwaj 'odiously' in jail

By Atul, Sandeep Pandey*
Professor Sudha Bharadwaj has been in jail since August 2018. She was taken into police custody on August 26, 2018 on suspicion of being involved in Maoist terror activities after Republic TV claimed that she had allegedly written a letter to Maoists and was conspiring to create public disorder and unrest in India.

Plant organic, eat fresh: Emlen Bage's journey from migrant labour to agri-entrepreneur

By Chandrashekar and Kriti*
Who is a farmer? Type this question in the google search and check out the images? You can see men thronging the screen. This is the popular perception around the globe. Well one can understand how difficult it would be for a woman to defy this perception.

High youth unemployment: India 'fails' to take advantage of demographic dividend

By Varun Kumar
As coronavirus pandemic continues amplifying challenges among youth with regard to employment opportunities, government policies have further resulted in economic slowdown, leading to mass unemployment and loss jobs. According to the International Labour Organisation report “Covid-19 and the World of Work” (May 27, 2020), around 94 percent of the world’s workers are living in countries with some sort of workplace closure measures in place.

Ex-official: Murmu, appointed as CAG, will 'surely' perform shradh of the institution

Counterview Desk
A former senior official of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG), Shantanu Basu, in a Facebook comment in the wake of the appointment of GC Murmu, a Gujarat IAS cadre official of the 1985, has raised doubts about the independence of CAG following the Government of India move.

Dichotomy? US Hindutva groups oppose racism, mum on Modi's 'anti-minority' stance

By Our Representative
The Hindus for Human Rights (HHR), a US-based advocacy group, has noticed a major dichotomy between the stance taken by RSS’ US arm, Hindu Swayamsewak Sangh (HSS), expressing “shock” at the “painful killing of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and so many others”, all of which suggest “the tragic tale of racial injustice” in US, and HSS’ “hatred” for India’s religious minorities and Dalits.