US Bill contradicts PMs assurance on nuclear deal

New Delhi, March 30 | Updated: Mar 31 2006, 05:30am hrs
Claiming that the Waiver Authority Bill introduced in the US Congress on March 16 was cleverly drafted for imposing a qualitative and quantitative ceiling on Indias nuclear deterrence, senior BJP leader Murli Manohar Joshi on Thursday said that this was to ensure that India will never emerge a full nuclear weapons state.

While nuclear weapon states will remain free to conduct nuclear explosions, the Bill makes India permanently precluded from conducting any nuclear tests. Our voluntary moratorium on future tests, which was revocable on our perception of necessity, will cease to be revocable, Dr Joshi said, releasing his letter written to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

Saying that Dr Singh had assured Parliament that India would never accept discrimination, Dr Joshi alleged that the provisions of the proposed Bill placed before Congress for ratification of the Indo-US nuclear deal contradicted all assertions by the Prime Minister.

That is, under the Bill, India becomes a party to the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty which the US Senate had rejected some years ago, he said.

Citing that Pakistan was not under the ambit of any such restriction, he said it can overtake India on nuclear weapons. What India and its scientists had achieved after Pokhran II has been lost by signing the Indo-US nuclear deal in March 2006, he said.

Besides, any violation of this blanket ban would lead to the cessation of fuel supply to Indias nuclear supply. In fact, it would be the US President who will decide on the violation, raising the question whether our entire nuclear programme will depend upon the determination by the US, he said.