Government offers to discuss Nuclear Bill with opposition

Subscribe to Oneindia News

New Delhi, Mar 17 (ANI): Science and Technology Minister Prithviraj Chavan on Wednesday said that Central Government is ready to discuss Nuclear Bill with the opposition parties.

Addressing reporters on the sidelines of a conference here, Chavan urged the opposition parties to look up at the principles as to why was the government trying to bring in the Bill.

"My point is that they are free to criticize, my only request to the opposition, let us discuss in the open manner. But let us look at the merits, philosophy, the principles, why we are trying to bring it," he said.

Opposition parties say the Bill favours private players as it seeks to put a maximum liability of about 450 million dollars on the state-run reactor operator without placing any compensation burden on private suppliers and contractors.

Chavan further stated that the government was open to discuss compensation amount also.

"The compensation amount can be discussed, but it is a balanced with...of the compensation amount through out the world and it somewhere in the middle, it is not as high as in some countries, nor it is as low as in some countries. The compensation amount, we are insisting that operator must take insurance. So, if we set up unreasonably high compensation amount, the insurance cost come down, the cost of power goes up," he said.

The Central government deferred the crucial nuclear energy Bill after protests by opposition on Monday.

India has offered to tender construction of two nuclear power plants, a business opportunity worth 10 billion US dollars, to American firms such as General Electric Company and Westinghouse Electric Company, presently a subsidiary of Japan's Toshiba Corporation.

But the liability issue has delayed things, putting the US firms at a competitive disadvantage over Russian and French firms whose accident liability is underwritten by their governments. (ANI)

Please Wait while comments are loading...