NEAR EAST AND SOUTH ASIA REVIEW - - INDIA-US NUCLEAR RELATIONS: DISSIPATING GOO

Created: 5/27/1983

OCR scan of the original document, errors are possible

Indii-I'S Nuclear HclarinnviU||^

Prnhlemshr Rrsrior*

Asicsimeni* of USinert* whoudiril lhe Indian snare puru request, information iuppl>cd b> ih< Indnnt^njhcIn.ii.iucac-.ori can no longer be operated >j'(I> without ihe US spare pan* and ihat the pnieniijl esists for an accideni involving ihe release of ijdw lione cos xjnrnr.nl Ret em Indianlaim lhal Taraou' *tK*erslready been es-noted toiceii of iniernai.onal]>standards, and radtoectne gaseseeninlo the simotphcrc Ona* the India" presi reported that one of lhe reactors was shut don for routine maintenance and replacemeniump seal. Indian Atomic Energy Commission Chairman llomi Scihna told US olTicials ai that timeomp in the cooling system had failed and that ih< reacior could no lor.ger be Operated safely without OS spare parts Although press commentary on the lems at Tarapur has so far been muled. Sethraed that the USuppty *pare part*esultant reactor ihutdown -ouldajor public issue

India msde its fusi formal request io ihe United Slates for spare parts in? and submitted tls first detailed liii of needl in July. The I'micd States has told the Indiam that any ctport of pans mutt comply with ibe Nuclear Non-proliferationthe law musi be amended, and that it would beongress could be siiurcdih.it India bad no current plans io reprocess Tarspur fuel, which tbe Indian) confirmed io US represents lives in February

Mat' FSB

Indian (ttijecthr*

ndianon ihe Tarapur

i"uc iff in

T.ir.ipgr reactorii* tprni fuel endet withncd Si.Hi> exp.ro ini

nj pe,il..need ihuidn-nid the Tarapur reoeuwdun civil nuclear program ha- mmeadii>ivdttach fat owlcrcum.harardv and failure lo prwot chc.ip. reliable eleeincily.believe thai ihe Indian nuclear oiaMishmcnl is relueiani loshut down rjripur for an tttended period, even if majorlems exist

Steve the ipart In ogr view. India gcnumcU needi (he pans from ihe United Statea. Wehat Indian industry lacki ihe experience ortechnologyake theuickly enoughsng shutdown of Tarapur. Accordint io US and foreign reacior tendon, moreover, only the United States can supply the parli for ihe Amcrl-cin'nude reactors We believe that Indian nuclear officiil* would alto likewl the high com ofufficiency for the remainingear* ofeo>cctcd useful life of ihe rcaciors

Atoid broader confrontation on nuclear iiiuei wifA ibe LulledSiaiei. In our judgment. New Delhi warmetain US goodhai Washington will take Indian concerns intou rela* iioni wiih Pakistan, particularly ia restrainingtan'l efTorts to acquire nuclear weapons. Wcthai Prime Minister Gandhi withes to sustain ihe improvement in relations that resulted from herishington and loalance in Indian reUiiont with both the United States and ihe Soviet Union.

/twin/ any commitment! thai would extend or ripanj the US role In the Indian nucleer peoeram Wc believe Ihat Ihe Indian nuclear estabiishmeni continues lo use ihe specter of foreign dependence to jnsiify iu costly and autarchicpower program. Accordingress reports, opposition parties ceiei-circd last fall's agreement between India and the United Slates for refueling ihe Tarapur reacior becauseailed to terminate all USr tha nuclear program In response. Gandhi has told the Indian parliament that all safeguards on the

Tarapur and India't Nuclearourjo extendedt ibe emorniraiuyn ihai ike piimproblems would enhance the chancer thatcurrently director of the llhj.huCenter, would succeed Komi Sethnaof the Atomic Energyreach retirement age (his fall aad musipcrmnsionfiVtworking energetically lo

replace Sethna as (he country's senior nuclear policy adviser. Ramanna argues ihat Senna has failed toorkable civil nuclear cower program

avors merall closer nuclear tics with the Soviet Union, including acceptancenvici offerrovide India with large power reactors. In Ramanna'(Opinion.

"he Sovici offer would enable India so make iuWh-iiI prugrcxs in espjndmg us nuclear generating capac tj ^anannaaa^

Outlook

In our judgment, the Indian nuclear establish me ni is likely to press Gandhi tourn commitment from Secretary Shulll to resolve the spare parts issue Wc believe that New Delhi willarder line in Ihe discussions if revelations or alleged safely hazards at the Tarapur reactors continue in the Indian press. The Indians may even threaten to reprocess Tarapur spent fuel in order to force ihe United States to reverse what ihey regard as inexcusable delay and bad faith In its failure to deliver the spare pans In our view,inor but fully documented release of radioactivity from Tarapur into the crowded Bombay area woaM prov*he aa outburst of ami-American sentiment by inc Indian public that would threaten to discredit nuclear officials such as Sethna who haveesolution of outstanding issues with the Uniiad Suies Under these circumstances,believe thai Ramanna and others whoess cooperative pvtturc toward US nuclear nonproliferation interests could take control o' ihe nuclear

Original document.

Comment about this article or add new information about this topic:

CAPTCHA