Indian opposition BJP asks government to withdraw nuclear liability bill

21:40, June 09, 2010      

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India's opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Wednesday asked the government to withdraw the nuclear liability bill in the wake of the 1984 Bhopal gas tragedy verdict which only gave light penalty to the accused, reported the Indo-Asian News Service.

A spokesman for the BJP said the Congress-led government should withdraw the nuclear liability bill as "the aim of the bill is to please Americans".

The BJP had earlier demanded a revision of the civil nuclear liability legislation in the light of the Bhopal gas disaster, in which a gas leak from the U.S.-based Union Carbide killed at least 20,000 people 25 years ago in the central Indian city.

A local court Monday gave two years of imprisonment to seven former Indian employee of the Union Carbide who was accused of negligence in the Bhopal gas tragedy.

The Civil Liability for Nuclear Damage Bill submitted this year by the government to Parliament, fixes maximum amount of liability in case of a nuclear accident at 5 billion rupees (10 million U.S. dollars) to be paid by the operator of the nuclear plant.

The legislation makes the operator exclusively liable in case of an accident, but there is no mention of the suppliers' liability, therefore, these provisions have prompted parallels with the Bhopal gas tragedy, said the Indo-Asian News Service.

Source: Xinhua


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