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|July 23, 1998||
India will not succumb to pressure on N-weaponisation, asserts Fernandes
India will not succumb to any pressure on the issue of inducting nuclear weapons into the armed forces, Defence Minister George Fernandes asserted in the Lok Sabha today.
Responding to a supplementary from Arif Mohamed Khan (BSP), he, however, declined to detail the areas where these weapons would be inducted. ''Being an N-weapon state is one thing and the sections where you induct it is another. It is not wise to make a statement on it,'' he said.
Advocating nuclearisation of the Indian armed forces, Khan expressed apprehension that India was abandoning the nuclear weaponisation programme due to ''outside pressure.''
Fernandes told retired Lt General B C Khanduri (BJP) that the decision to set up a National Security Council was part of the national agenda of the ruling coalition.
The defence minister declined to elaborate as, he said, the government was yet to take a final view of the task force that had examined the issue and favoured its (NSC) formation.
Fernandes told N Bhaskara Rao (Congress) that it was unwise to dwell upon the possible shape of the Council as it concerned national security.
He refused to divulge details of the NSC set-up on the plea that ''it would be premature till the government took a final view of the task force recommendations.''
He also refused to entertain Janata Dal MP S Jaipal Reddy's demand that the task force report at least be made available to Parliament.
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