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Nuclear energy pivotal for India: PM
March 24, 2008 12:16 IST
Last Updated: March 24, 2008 12:34 IST
In spite of increasing opposition from the Left Front to the India-United States nuclear agreement, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh [Images] on Monday said that his government is committed to developing nuclear energy as a clean source of electricity.
"Our government is committed to developing nuclear energy as a clean source of electricity," Singh said after laying the foundation stone of the 1500 MW Pragati Phase three-gas power project at Bawana.
The Prime Minister pointed out that some sources of energy might be cheap today, but the country needs to think for future generations.
"Our energy needs are bound to grow. We will be failing in the duty to our nation and to posterity if we do not look ahead and take steps for not just today and tomorrow but for future generations," he said.
While India was blessed with ample solar energy, it would be sometime before this source could be tapped in large quantity, said Dr Singh. "We must hence widen our energy basket to ensure energy security," he said.
Dr Singh said the strategy for energy security was multi-pronged. "We don't have the luxury of depending upon only one or two resources," he said.
Citing the growing energy demand due to increasing urbanisation, the Prime Minister said India needs to widen its choices for electricity, which should include alternative resources like nuclear power.
"The economy is growing at 8-9 per cent per annum. With growing urbanisation and rising prosperity, the demand for electricity is outpacing existing sources of supply," he said.
He said India was blessed with vast reserves of coal and the government has taken up steps to increase its production. The government was also trying to develop hydro-electricity,"but we have to also keep in mind the environmental concerns and concerns about people displaced by mining and dams," he said.