1. PM Modi’s ‘desi’ nuclear power push as China continues to block NSG entry: What it means for India

PM Modi’s ‘desi’ nuclear power push as China continues to block NSG entry: What it means for India

Modi government has decided to set up 10 'indigenous' Pressurized Heavy Water Reactors (PHWR).

By: | New Delhi | Published: May 18, 2017 6:22 PM
india nuclear power push, narendra modi, india nuclear power reactor, india nsg entry, india china, china india, india nsg, nsg india Prime Minister Narendra Modi visiting the Narmada Temple & Udgam Sthal, in Amarkantak on Monday. (PTI Photo)

As China continues to block India’s entry to the coveted Nuclear Supplier Group (NSG), Modi government has decided to set up 10 ‘indigenous’ Pressurized Heavy Water Reactors (PHWR). The decision taken by the Union Cabinet on Wednesday is expected to fast-track India’s domestic nuclear power programme, and give a push to the country’s nuclear industry.

It should be recalled here that India had been trying to buy six nuclear reactors from a US-based company but can’t make a big move on the deal because of Chinese reservations to India’s entry to the NSG, which would have ensured uninterrupted supply of nuclear fuels for the reactors. Even Russia and France have not been able to convince China to drop its opposition to India’s entry into the NSG.

According to a Cabinet release on Wednesday, the total installed capacity of the 10 PHWR plants would be 7000 MW, resulting in a significant augmentation of nuclear power generation capacity within the country.

At present, the total installed nuclear power capacity in the country is of 6780 MW from 22 operational plants. Another 6700 MWs of nuclear power is expected to come onstream by 2021-22 through several under-construction projects. A PHWR uses natural Uranium as fuel and heavy water as both moderator and coolant. The natural Uranium for these reactors can be sourced from Tummallapalla in Kadapa, Andhra Pradesh.

According to the release, the 10 PHWR units would come up in a fleet mode as a fully indigenous initiative and be one of the flagships ‘Make in India’ projects in the nuclear energy sector. This will also give manufacturing orders to the tune of Rs 70,000 crores to the domestic industry and create over 33,400 jobs in direct and indirect employment.

The government decision to set up these plants can be seen as a move to improve India’s dependence on clean energy. Moreover, it is also expected to transform India’s nuclear industry by linking nuclear power sector with the indigenous industrial capacities in high-end technologies. The orders to domestic industry would also help strengthen India’s credentials as a major nuclear-manufacturing nation.

The release says that the 10 reactors would be part of India’s latest design of 700 MW PHWR fleet, which has been developed with “state-of-art technology meeting the highest standards of safety.”

India has built and operated PHWR reactors for the last forty years and its record is globally acclaimed. “It (the decision) underscores the mastery our nuclear scientists have attained over all aspects of indigenous PHWR technology. India’s record of building and operating PHWR reactors over the last nearly forty years is globally acclaimed.”

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  1. S
    May 19, 2017 at 10:56 pm
    India to hire 34,000 SC/ST/BC/OBC s for ten Make in India Nuclear Power Plants:
    1. S
      May 19, 2017 at 7:09 pm
      Excellent move by PM Modi. Necessity is the mother of invention. Why depend on others?Indian talents are better than anybody else's. INDIA is capable of self sustenance. Over a period of time the world will look up to India for technology. China is envious of Indian brains.They cannot accept India's entry into NSG. We salute PM MODI'S move.
      1. H
        H R Jaiswal
        May 19, 2017 at 5:59 pm
        A very bold and correct decision. This is the beauty of Modi Govt to take independent decision on matter of National importance .
        1. Aarthi Banampalli
          May 19, 2017 at 5:48 pm
          We built our own supercomputers when USA refused to give us.This time we build our PHWR.Way to go India.
          1. R
            May 19, 2017 at 5:18 pm
            Time and again India proved its ability in high technology area, this is another golden chance to prove. China's objection of India entering NSG is not responsible..... It's always their national interest taking the priority, approach of staying a head by pul contender down doesn't last long for China. It is just a matter of a decade that China will be hearing India as their equal economic might. I am proud of the Govt proactive initiatives.
            1. Y
              Y S Shah
              May 19, 2017 at 4:54 pm
              Excellent work by present govt and should ban imports from China to teach them a lesson there econome will collapse if we stop imports from China. We need to be tough and send them clear message by imposing pennel import duty for import from China. Atleast we should bring certain items like toys and other products put under import duty from China.
              1. Anil Kumar Sharma
                May 19, 2017 at 2:30 pm
                Very good move we cant be in a perpetual waiting mode China or no China.
                1. Prithwis Kumar Goswami
                  May 19, 2017 at 2:02 pm
                  India should ban Chinese items import completely.
                  1. S
                    May 19, 2017 at 10:41 am
                    We HAD all the Technology and SUCCESSFULLY managed to squander everything away in the past. THANKS to the present Leadership's Purposeful & Decisive move we can hope to redeem at least part of our Capabilities. BEST WISHES all the time all the way. JAI HIND.
                    1. A
                      Anand Rahurikar
                      May 19, 2017 at 10:33 am
                      India should ban Chinese items import completely. India is the largest importer of goods from China. International pressure won't work on China as it's holding the veto power in NSG and it won't give that up. Secondly China helping stan directly to increase it weapon power and technology. We should forget trying to put international pressure on China and develop our own strategies to build nuclear reactor indegeniously. But meanwhile it's also important to boost the local products and ban Chinese products in India.
                      1. Arun Kottur
                        May 19, 2017 at 10:13 am
                        hearty congratulations wishing g success in implementation without hike in cost and time
                        1. Dr. D K Ghosh
                          May 19, 2017 at 9:35 am
                          It is an excellently​ good decision by the present govt of India. We have experience and have experts on PHWR technology in our country. Why look for others ? ISRO is a burning example.
                          1. S
                            Sugan Singh Deora
                            May 19, 2017 at 8:35 am
                            India's approach is liberal nationalistic and altruistic humanitarian face of stif opposition from our adversaries with regard to our nuclear energy programmes, our world acclaimed talented scientists and technologist should be provided with all the uptodate latest world cl facilities to lead and carry forward the programme.
                            1. Rajendra Prasad Kavali
                              May 19, 2017 at 5:13 am
                              Thanks to Mr.Modiji and his team for taking such good decision where we will be sufficient like ISRO on nuclear front. Mr.Modiji you make india proud enough to hail you as you are GOD given strength. Thank you, and keep doing wonders and self sufficient india....
                              1. Akshay garg
                                May 18, 2017 at 9:51 pm
                                I think it is best that India develops its own capabilities in various fields. We have excelled in Space technology,and we will slowly but surely excel in Defence manufacturing and Nuclear Energy. ISRO is a great example of what India is capable of. We should believe in ourselves and go on the path of not just 'Make in India' but 'Make by India' i.e. using Indian talent and capital. This may take time but it will be sustainable.
                                1. D
                                  Dilip Kumar Bordoloi
                                  May 18, 2017 at 7:50 pm
                                  China not likely to allow India into NSG in near future and therefore India has no alternative but to pursue own technology for harnessing clean energy. Therefore Govt's decision to go for 10 indegenenus n-reactors is praise worthy. In this context I also wish that our Govt should also change our No First Use Policy related to use of our nuclear weapons against our enemies.
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