Shelving Nuke Deal will hit Uranium supply: Srinivasan

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Chennai, Jan 8 (UNI) Eminent nuclear scientist and former Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) Chairman M R Srinivasan today said the country will face a shortage of Uranium and its influence on the international sphere on nuclear-related development will be limited, if the Indo-US Nuclear Deal did not materialise.

Talking to reporters on the sidelines of a function here, Dr Srinivasan, speaking in favour of the deal, said even if the Nuke Pact did not go through, India could go ahead with its own nuclear programme. ''But it will be facing shortage of Uranium supply and the issue of low grade ores in the country,'' he cautioned.

''We cannot move ahead fast with our own Uranium and reactors.

But the import of these will help us make rapid progress in nuclear power generation,'' the nuclear scientist observed.

He said the deal would enable India to come out of Nuclear isolation and emerge as an influential player in the global arena.

''Once the deal was operationalised, India will have more access to international nuclear technology and import of Uranium''.

''We can even import nuclear power reactors from France, the US and Japan, while Uranium can be imported from Australia and Canada,'' he added.

Describing the fears raised by some political parties as ''imaginary,'' Dr Srinivasan said those political parties, opposing the 123 Agreement, should take a long-term view and see the good the deal would bring to the country (in terms of fuel supply).'' Allaying fears that the US was trying to 'impose' itself on the country, by way of the conditions in the 123 Agreement, he said ''it is not so and it cannot be done.'' ''I don't think there is such a situation... Only some politicians have got themselves into it. There is no provision to control India. But, there is some fear complex in them (those opposing it) that the US can dominate our foreign policy, which cannot be done,'' Dr Srinivsan averred.

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