Well a similar dialog is there in “Welcome to Sajjanpur”. It really got me thinking. We are witnessing this nuclear power saga for last one and half year or so. It seems that the Congress party has all its hopes pinned on clinching this deal. Of course they have little to show as accomplishment by their government in last five years.
Inflation is all time high. After surpassing 20K mark the sensex is hovering around 15K mark. A lot of investors(speculators?) have lost quite a bit of money in the process. Home loans are being expensive. And add to that the terrorist bombings that are happening every 2 months or so. All total miserable failures. And add the extreme load shading that is happening in many states.
So the congress party is trying to show the nuclear deal as their great achievement. (The same “India Shining” mistake in my opinion.) In fact it seems clear that US is trying to use the deal so as to prevent India from further testing of nuclear weapons. But for me its really not the point. Personally I support Nuclear Non-Proliferation (but not NPT). Last thing I want is various countries dropping the nuclear bombs on each other, leading to demise of this planet.
The other issue I want to point out is that in our current electricity usage, the share of nuclear energy is below 3%. Now suppose that the nuclear deal happens and at some point in future this share of nuclear energy rises to say 60% or so. And if in such a case, we are totally dependent on US and other key players for our source of nuclear fuel, what will happen to India’s independent decision making power? Say suppose US decides to bomb China at that point, will we be able to oppose their decision, if we had so much dependence for nuclear fuel on them?
[Update 24th Sept. 2008: Today I had discussion about this post with my friend Salil, who disagreed about the previous para. He was saying that US will never bomb China in near future. Yes I agree to that. I was just trying to give an example. May be I chose a far fetched one. What I intend to say that if we become too dependent for our nuclear fuel needs on NSG in future we will loose our ability to oppose. Our independent decision making ability because of threat of supply cut of nuclear fuel. Our longer term goal should be to become self sufficient for all our energy requirements.]
So am I suggesting that we shouldn’t opt for this deal? No I am not saying that. Energy is the foremost need of development. Without energy no superpowers can be made. And if our immediate energy problems can be solved by this nuclear deal (another question to ponder about) then by all means we should enter into the deal. But at the same time we should allocate bigger budget for exploration of nuclear fuel in the Indian territory. Also we should be committed to the use of alternative and renewable energy sources. So that in future if need comes we should be self sufficient regarding our energy needs. What do you think? In between I have decided to know more about alternative and renewable energy resources and their application to India. Of course I will be sharing what I come to know about it here in this space. So see you till then.