Policy

India’s nuclear liability law will not be amended: govt

PTI New Delhi | Updated on January 24, 2018 Published on February 08, 2015

The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi with the US President, Mr. Barack Obama, at Hyderabad House, in New Delhi on January 25, 2015.

The government today made it clear that India’s liability law will not be amended as it released the understanding reached with the U.S. recently under which foreign suppliers of equipment for the nuclear reactors cannot be sued by the victims in case of a mishap.

In a detailed paper on ‘frequently asked questions’ dealing with contentious issues including liability, compensation and right of recourse in case of a nuclear mishap, the External Affairs Ministry said, “There is no proposal to amend the Civil Liability for Nuclear Damage (CLND) Act or the Rules.”

The Foreign suppliers of the reactors cannot be sued for the damages by victims of a nuclear accident but can be held liable by the operator who has the right of recourse that could be operationalised through the contract between the operator and the supplier, they said.

Noting that the understanding on the policy hurdles were reached after three rounds of discussions between the Indo-US Nuclear Contact Group, which met last in London, just three days before U.S. President Barack Obama arrived here on January 25, it said, “Based on these discussions, an understanding was reached with the U.S. on the two outstanding issues on civil nuclear cooperation, which was confirmed by the leaders (Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Obama) on January 25, 2015.”

Asserting that the country’s Civil Liability for Nuclear Damages (CLND) Act “channels all legal liability for nuclear damage exclusively to the operator”, the MEA said, “concerns” over the broad scope of Section 46, pertaining to possible actions under other laws, have been raised by suppliers, both domestic and foreign and clarified that this section “does not provide a basis for bringing claims for compensation for nuclear damage under other Acts.”

India has given a Memorandum to the U.S. on Friday assuring them the same.

Published on February 08, 2015
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