Nuclear Deal, ‘National Interest’ and the Indian Left – PK Sundaram
It is the Indian left’s concurrence, rather than its disagreement, with the idea of a nuclear future (including nuclear weapons) that has made its case weak and inaudible to the larger masses.
Contextualizing the deal
In a charged atmosphere produced by the backers and opponents of the deal both pitching their positions in terms of ‘national interests’, it would be necessary not to lose sight of its broader meanings and implications.
In its essence, the deal is about opening up of the restrictions over nuclear commerce put on India after its 1974 ‘peaceful nuclear tests’. Though initiated and facilitated by the United States, this move will provide India access to international markets in nuclear fuel, material and technology, in accordance to the safeguards and guidelines of the IAEA and the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG). While it would imply huge imports from the US, the deal also removes international fetters on nuclear trade with other countries including Russia, China, France and Australia whose corporations would get major business orders from India once the deal comes into effect.
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