New York, July 18 : Democrat from New York and Member of US House Committee on Foreign Affairs Joseph Crowley has said that unlike its neighbours India has never been nuclear proliferator.
In an exclusive interview to ANI in NewYork, Crowley said the nuclear civilian transfer deal is actually about nuclear power and clean energy. He said that though India has not signed the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), it has actually adhered to its spirit.
"I think Americans look at the price of gas and oil here in the United States, much of which is being driven by competing demands within China and India, that we all need to be looking at different forms of clean power, and nuclear is one of them. That's the significance of this deal. India has never been a proliferator beyond its borders, unlike some of its neighbours, so I think in some respects they're being rewarded with here," said Crowley.
"Even though India didn't sign the NPT, and detonated her first nuclear device in the early 1970s, therefore making her ineligible to sign the NPT, but she has actually adhered to the NPT and gone above and beyond in terms of her responsibilities as it pertains to that," added Crowley.
Speaking about the evolving relationship between New Delhi and Washington, Crowley described it as the most important relationship that the US has outside its traditional allies.
"I do think it is an important relationship, and probably outside of Great Britain, France, some of the traditional allies, it may very well become the most important relationship for the US in this century. And that's not to the diminishment of other countries either, whether it's Russia or China - but I think in terms of our values, in terms of our commitments to democracy, India is and will become an even greater ally of the United States," said Crowley.
Crowley expressed optimism about the fate of the India-US nuclear deal under Obama administration if it is elected to power in the upcoming elections in the United States.
"Well all I can go by is the initial vote, and although no one is held to support the 123 agreement, in that Senator Obama did vote for the initial bill to be moved from the Foreign Relations Committee in the Senate and also supported it on the floor of the Senate when it was there. So I think at least it has shown initial support for the civilian nuclear transfer with India," said Crowley.
India still needs the approval of International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) governors, then the 45-nation Nuclear Suppliers Group, where there are reservations because India is outside the Non-Proliferation Treaty, and finally ratification by the U.S. Congress.