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N-deal bill may be unpalatable: India
July 15, 2006 02:15 IST
As the two Houses of US Congress prepared for a vote on the legislation relating to bills regarding the nuclear deal signed between India and the US, Foreign Secretary Shyam Saran on Friday night said the bills could contain some references that India may find 'unpalatable'.
He maintained that India cannot undertake any obligations going beyond the July 18 Joint Statement and the Separation Plan.
Referring to the bills providing for change of US law to allow nuclear trade with India, he said these bills are likely to be voted on by the US House of Representatives and the Senate in the coming days and 'if all goes well, we may see the product of an American political process and could well include some references that we may find unpalatable," Saran said.
He added: "While making our views quite clear, we must focus on what is essential."
Saran underlined that India's obligations will "only be those that we undertake in the bilateral 123 Cooperation Agreement and the safeguards agreement with the IAEA."
Noting that the Separation Plan of India's nuclear reactors presented to the US under the deal has been depicted by some analysts as eroding the vigour of our strategic deterrent, Saran said, "I can only state that those who are in the position to make an informed judgment on the needs of our credible minimum deterrent have concluded otherwise."