New Delhi, Sep 23 (UNI) Asserting that the next step to operationalise the Indo-US nuclear deal should be taken as early as possible, Chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission Dr Anil Kakodkar said there were no formal discussions with the IAEA on the safeguards agreement with India in Vienna.
''I did not have formal discussions during my talks in Vienna last week with the International Atomic Energy Agency on the safeguards agreement with India, which is a critical next step.
However, informal discussions did take place,'' Dr Kakodkar told NDTV in an exclusive interview in Vienna.
He said ''I have not come to Vienna specifically for discussing the Indo-US nuclear deal. But, there is a general activity on this and a lot of curiosity, so some informal discussion does take place.'' When asked about formal talks on the India-specific safeguards with the IAEA, Dr Kakodkar said ''We hope it can happen soon.
We have had informal discussions earlier both in Delhi and Vienna and we have a clear idea about the approach one needs to follow.'' Dr Kakodkar admitted that convincing the 45 countries of the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) for civil nuclear cooperation would be tough. ''We have been trying to convey to them the importance of India getting into civil nuclear deal becasue we feel it's also in the larger global interest,'' he added.