Thursday, August 30, 2007

Nuclear deal...finally some light in this room..

Finally I read something worthwhile in the paper!

1- Bashing the Left for its opposition to the Indo-US civilian nuclear deal has, indeed, become the flavour of the month.

I agree.. since none of the papers gave a favourable article and they were very keen in publishing polls showing that more than 95% of the Indians are for the nuclear deal. They never asked for my opinion!

2- B Raman, a former senior officer of India’s intelligence apparatus, slanderously wrote on this page (The Manchurian candidates, August 21) that the Left’s campaign against India’s nuclear deal is “driven by China’s concerns”.

I don’t agree with this.. of course they share the same ideologies but when it comes to policies I trust the communists more. I can use many examples from my own state Kerala, although we use every opportunity to batter them, deep in our hearts we know that the most honest and able leaders came from the communist party.

3- In 2006, 3.9 gw of nuclear power was generated, 3 per cent of India’s total power generation. In the most optimistic scenario, after the operationalisation of this deal, this would grow, at best, to 20 gw by 2016, or just over 6 per cent of the projected generation.

So what are we giving up for this increase in 6%? When the facts are thus.....

4- Further, is nuclear power cost-effective? On the contrary, it is the most expensive option. As compared to coal, it would be one-and-a-half times more expensive. Compared with gas, it is twice as expensive. So is the case with hydro-electricity. Given the abundance of coal reserves in India, the Planning Commission estimates that thermal energy would dominate power generation in India. As far as hydro-electricity is concerned, given the potential of nearly 150 gw, only 33 gw has been installed as of 2006. In addition, over 55,000 MW could be imported from Nepal and Bhutan. The tapping of such huge hydro-potential will not only augment our energy capacities at half the cost of nuclear energy, but will also tame these rivers, which regularly consume the lives of thousands. This year’s floods according to the United Nations, are ‘unprecedented’ in human memory.

Yes, there is more to this wonderful deal..

5- Huge commercial orders running into thousands of crores of rupees for the purchase of nuclear reactors would be placed on the US. The profit bonanza to multinational corporations is there for all to see with the attendant benefits to sections of corporate India. Recollect that for more than three decades the West has not installed new nuclear power reactors.


6-Apart from drawing India into the US strategic military alliances in the region like the forthcoming joint military exercises with the US, Japan, Australia and Singapore, and the effort at pressurising India’s foreign policy positions, this deal does not even guarantee full and complete access to civilian nuclear technology as assured by the Prime Minister in the Rajya Sabha. In fact, the 123 agreement forbids the transfer of dual-use technologies.

Thank you Mr. Sitaram Yechury… I see some light in this room now…

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