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India needs nuclear liability law: US expert
December 03, 2006 20:12 IST
The absence of a nuclear liability law in India could be a major impediment to atomic trade as the proposed Indo-US nuclear deal nears approval, an American legal expert has said.
"Currently, India does not have a nuclear liability law covering its facilities. Therefore, concerns over nuclear liability will be a major impediment to any nuclear trade with India," said Omer Brown of the law firm Harmon, Wilmot and Brown.
"Most US nuclear suppliers would not be willing to work in India without nuclear liability protection," Brown, who is in Mumbai to take part in an Indo-US business summit, told PTI.
A nuclear liability regime would ensure compensation to the public in the event of an accident, he explained.
Such a regime includes features like channeling of all liabilities to the nuclear facility's operator (eliminating the need to prove fault or to sue multiple parties) and designation of a single competent court to enable consolidation of all claims under one forum, Brown said.
"Joining the 1997 Convention on Supplementary Compensation for Nuclear Damage will integrate India into the system of international nuclear commerce and facilitate its participation in global trade," he said.