US unemployment unrelenting! Obama is obsessed with Bangalore’s competition to American jobs!
Our government tries to prove more loyal than the king!

The civil nuclear liability bill to be passed with so many doubts uncleared! Will the Indian people trust Prime Minister’s many promises to the previous US government?

Obama is an intelligent man! He knows India is a soft target. India wants to have the best of both worlds! Have the nuclear equipment imports without signing the NPT or the CtBT.

And what promises Manmohan Singh has given, you know?

Our Prime Minister neither talks nor takes Parliament into confidence. Says experts and even sections of the elite Manmohan’s assurance to US government and the nuclear equipment suppliers will haunt the government and the Indian people for long.

Certainly, this is not the last word on our civil nuclear liability bill.

The Indo-US civil nuclear deal is at a particular stage when the US President Barack Obama is about to visit India in November and when India is having many other troubles with the USA under Obama’s leadership right now.

First, the US economy itself is not in good shape. Obama’s leadership itself has raised mixed reactions in the US and in the US media. The US President, the American media says is facing a fading popularity.

This is troubling, it seems, the US President at the moment. Yes, he had faced immense problems since his election. US economy went into recession, it is a historic events and the US economy is still faltering.

The huge legislative achievements of the President is noted and applauded. Yet, the unemployment rate, a very high one at this point of time, has driven the President to take shots at India in particular.

The Indian industry, in particular the India IT industry that had blazed a trail of success and lifted India into a global success story.

This has obviously upset the average American citizen and now the American President.

The US President’s action in raising the visa fees for the HB-1 visa fees had hurt the Indian IT industry.

There is a serious reaction against the US Senator who spoke very badly about the IT companies, as chop shops. This is an angry reaction against the IT companies who, it is alleged, have stolen the US jobs.

Now with the US President repeatedly focusing on Bangalore as his  villain, now with the US President visiting India, will he be visiting Bangalore and visiting the IT campuses for an inside view of the Indian economic realities?

In this mood when Indian industry is keeping its fingers crossed, comes also the Dow Chemical’s attempt to frighten the Indian government to trade off with the Bhopal tragedy. Give up all claims on Dow Chemicals, if you want the big US investments?

This, no sovereign nation worth its salt would welcome such a blatant old style American threat.
Now, comes the latest take on the civil nuclear deal.

The BJP and the Congress, it is said, have reached a secret deal. The deal is give up on Narendra Modi, give up the fake encounter case against him and then we co-operate with you.

Thus, the BJP came round to co-operate with the UPA to pass the nuclear liability bill.

Now, the latest hurdle is that the Parliamentary Standing Committee after reaching the understanding with the BJP inserted a clause or the word “and” to clause 17(a) and it dilutes the liability of the equipment suppliers, the BJP developed cold feet.
Whether it is serious or not is a different matter.

Assuming, it is a serious matter, there are other more basic issues.

In our opinion, India seems to be rising, rather to please Obama. The point is will Obama, the visiting US President would be too pleased with a government that doesn’t seem to have other serious ideas on signing the NPT or the CTBT and help to control the proliferation regime in the world.

There are many in the world who thinks India is not doing enough to control the nuclear proliferation. India seems to be a self-assured righteous power when it comes to nuclear proliferation and it is not playing by the international rules of the game, so to say.

Much more serious is the question whether the Indian people, the Indian public opinion is sufficiently educated and enlightened into accepting the assurances of the Indian government. Has our leaders and Prime Minister has educated and won over the Indian public opinion on a course of action that is fraught with
In our opinion, nuclear power is not a clear alternative in the present context of India’s development. The arguments have been made many times in the past and in the recent past as well.

First, nuclear power is very costly. We don’t know yet even in India what is the actual cost of the production of nuclear power. The unit cost is very high. The government is very secretive when it comes to nuclear issues.

Second, the accidents arising from nuclear power reactors are very horrendous. Its past history is enough, that is, the consequences from any nuclear accident; we have so many horror stories. Already we are suffering from the Bhopal gas tragedy. Now, so soon, so immediately  after Bhopal tragedy, after the Dow Chemical’s high-handed approach to pressurize India into submission, what sort of American nuclear equipment suppliers and services we are going to get from the USA?

Hibakusha is a new word added to the Japanese language to describe the 1945 victims of the atom bomb and their yet to be born children. Today, there are about 300,000 registered “Hibakushas” under medical care. Marriage with a “hibakusha” is ataboo in the Japanese society.
Today’s nuclear accidents are much more devastating than the one atom bomb of 1945.

In spite of the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty, there are about 22,000 nuclear war heads, motly in USA and Russia.

Pakistan has, it is said, 70-80 nuclear bombs, aimed at India! India is also said to have stockpiled 80-90 nuclear warheads.

Much more disturbing statistics are provided by Professor Dhirendra Sharma, convener, Committee for Sane Nuclear Policy.

It is almost a numbing feeling we get when we talk of the civil nuclear liability bill debate.

It is to the credit of the BJP party, a truly nationalist party takes these issues so seriously.

So, the reservations expressed in the letter the leader of the Opposition Ms.Sushma Swaraj write to the PMO Minister Mr.Prithviraj Chavan and the arguments put out by the senior leaders of the BJP, the former foreign minister Yashwant Sinha and the leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Mr.Arun Jaitley are all to be taken seriously by the government.

The greater tragedy, if we can so term the current situation, is the enigmatic silence of the Prime Minister in the whole business. He is the author of the whole civil nuclear deal, first under the voluble George Bush and now under the most astute incumbent at the White House.

The PM might pretend to be wiser, he might remain silent and also remain enigmatic and also wait for a safe passage of the bill through Parliament, but this is not a time for Manmohan Singh personally or for his government to score any victory.

This won’t be a moral victory for the UPA leadership.

The nation is not sufficiently enlightened over the whole game of nuclear power generation in India.

The whole approach is faulty. Mr.Pranab Mukherjee may be proven veteran in resolving the tangles in the current impasse.

This impasse is welcome and the country needs a more in-depth debate and discussion.

We need to evolve a national consensus.

Does the country have a consensus on the civil nuclear deal?

Mr.Obama would surely see through the Indian diplomatic game. He is a wise man and he would see things in the much more global perspective and in a broader perspective of nuclear disarmament and reducing the nuclear weapons reduction perspective.

There are country like North Korea and Iran. India can’t be oblivious to this international tensions and pressures.

What sort of Indo-US relationship India wants to forge with the USA.

India has lots of friends in lots of places. That is one thing. But when it comes to nuclear power generation, India is enjoying immunity, so to say, only by its well-understood ambiguity in the international communtiy, right?

So, a country that stands by Gandhi and Nehru philosophy of seeking international peace and arms reduction and nuclear disarmament, in particular, India needs to go for a period of intense debate on the nuclear issues.

Certainly to follow with a certain resignation under the leadership of Manmohan Singh, with such a total silence without any internal debate even within the Congress party and also outside the partisan political environment, it is not a wise thing to pursue the nuclear liability bill in its present form and present mood of the nation.

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