India will not halt nuclear programme: Dr. Sinha

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MUMBAI, October 30:  India will continue its nuclear programme without any interruption, irrespective of decisions taken by other countries, said R.K. Sinha, Chairman, Atomic Energy Commission and Secretary, Department of Atomic Energy on Wednesday.

Referring to Germany and Japan, which plan to end their dependence on nuclear energy, Dr. Sinha said India had no reason to follow these countries.

“We have been pursuing our nuclear programme on our own. We are in the process of establishing new nuclear power plants across India, without being dependent on any foreign country. There is no question of following them and halting our nuclear programme,” he told The Hindu. He said the Japanese government may decide to return to nuclear power in future, after completing security inspections.

On the proposed 9900 MW Jaitapur Nuclear Power Plant to be set up in Ratnagiri district of Maharashtra, Dr. Sinha said the techno-commercial agreement with the French company Areva was yet to be signed and negotiations had not been concluded.

Areva will be providing six European Pressurised Reactors to this project, the work on which is expected to begin by October 2015.

“The issues such as deciding the cost of electricity and the liability are pending. But we are confident that the issues will be resolved and we will not miss the deadline,” he said.

Earlier, Dr. Sinha delivered an address at the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre here on the occasion of the birth anniversary of the late Homi Jahangir Bhabha.

He said improved uranium supply from domestic and international sources had led to the growth of nuclear power generation.

“As a result of using advanced techniques, we have been able to identify new resources of uranium. In the last year our reserves have registered an increase of about 5 per cent,” he said.

On the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project, he said commercial operations of one unit would start by December 2013.

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