SHRI SITARAM YECHURY (contd.): But as the logic of the developments will take us, maybe, unintentionally we will be bound by certain positions which are not in our national interest. That is the premise on which I begin my entire argument at this stage, because in the last debate, when I sought the hon. Prime Minister's assurance that before anything further happens that he will come back to the House, you, hon. Chairman, had intervened saying that he had already given that assurance. I hope, once again, this assurance will be given that before this 123 Agreement is signed, the hon. Prime Minister and the Government will come back to the House and take the House into confidence because that is in the best of our democratic traditions and I would appeal the Government to adopt that process before we get into the content of what is happening.
The question is, the Hyde Act has defined the parameters by which the U.S. President will have to act. It is not our concern to go into what is a binding section and what is the non-binding section and what is a section that is mandatory; they may have all those niceties. But that is not something that binds us or binds me in India or us as the House or the Government. It is up to the Government of the USA to decide which parts are mandatory and which are not mandatory, which are obligatory; let them take their decisions. My concern is, if there are provisions within this Act which can be used against my country's sovereignty, then I am naturally concerned about it and I want the assurance that this will not be allowed. Therefore, let us not get into those technicalities of what is binding and what is not binding; let us actually talk about what is really contained in this Act.
Secondly, Sir, we are often told that we need to wait for the 123 agreement. Surely, we will wait. We are patient and we will wait. We would wait to study what all that will contain. But, our worry is that that 123 agreement can be achieved by the U.S. only under the parameters drawn out by the U.S. legislation. Now that legislation is not binding on us. Correct. I am not saying that that legislation is binding on us. But that legislation is binding on the President of the USA. Now, his parameters have been defined. The assurances that the Prime Minister has given, in my opinion, these parameters violate those assurances. If they violate those assurances, then what is the recourse we have in the 123 agreement to actually turn the clock back?
I am afraid, and, that is where, I think, whatever be our subjective intentions of hoping to make the USA accept our positions, but legislatively and legally, the USA has tied itself to the parameters that are bound by the U.S. legislature which neither we nor the U.S. President can now change. Since these parameters are violative of the assurances that are given, I would like to know from the Government how are we going to get away from this situation. That is why, Sir, I feel that it is untenable on our part. I hope we can pull out rabbits from the hats as the saying goes. But, from what I can read now, it is untenable right now for us to presume or to hope that the Prime Minister's assurances will be honoured by the 123 agreement. If it is done, very good. We will all be very happy and satisfied; but, from what it appears, I do not think, that is the position we can actually expect.
Then, another question also has come up. Yes, we will wait for the 123 agreement, as the Prime Minister said. But, in the meanwhile, what about the negotiation that goes on? For example, the 123 agreement need not contain the question of annual certification by the U.S. President. But, it is present in their Act, in their legislation. It would not be there in the 123 agreement, and, therefore, we cannot say, "since it is not there in 123 agreement, there is no need for the President to annually certify." But he will have to do according to his Act, his laws in his country. So, this is a tenuous argument: "Since it is not there in 123 agreement, therefore, it is no longer binding on us." But the President will have to act under their laws and, therefore, he is bound by their laws. And who will be the next President? Already the composition of Senate and the Congress is strange. What will be the situation? Therefore, it will be an illusion to think that we are somehow separated or we are distanced from that sort of requirement while the reality is not so.
So, keeping this sort of risks in mind, I would now like to, actually, briefly touch upon one point before going into the actual contents of the Hyde Act, and how I think it violates the Prime Minister's assurances. And that is concerning the entire issue of nuclear energy. (Contd. by 2w)
SHRI SITARAM YECHURY (CONTD): This issue of nuclear energy, our learned friend, hon. colleague, Mr. Singhvi, has also referred and yesterday I listened very attentively to the Prime Minister's reply in the other House where he also mentioned the need for augmenting the nuclear energy absolutely required for the country's economic march ahead. Very true! We do not dispute anything of that nature. We are required to augment our energy resources if we are actually aiming at a high growth trajectory. But what is the best way to do that, that is an issue that I am afraid we have not yet settled and that is where I had asked even earlier, Sir, what is the right fuel mix that you have in your country. Which is the source from which we can augment our energy resources? Is nuclear energy the best available option in terms of costing? What are we aiming? We are aiming for a 3000 MW generation. I mean what we have is 3310. We hope it will be doubled by 2015. Even then we are told it will be only 5 per cent of total energy production and consumption, therefore. But, Sir, what I want this House and the hon. Prime Minister also, through you, and the Government to note is the cost benefit analysis. If you just look at it, Sir, the production of nuclear energy compared to production of thermal energy from coal, the ratio is 3:2 -- three is for nuclear, two for coal. If it is compared to gas, the nuclear energy production will be double the cost - nuclear would be two and gas would be one. And if it is hydroelectric, then the nuclear energy cost would be five as compared to ratio 5:3 for hydroelectric. Now, if this is the costing that we have, are we really going in for a right, judicious mix of our energy requirements through expanding nuclear energy? And this is where I said our own National Hydroelectric Corporation today has given us an estimate that there is an untapped 50,000 MW of hydro potential in the country. 50,000 MW! And added to this, very good developments are taking place in our very close neighbouring country Nepal, Sir, and, if you look at their hydro potential, it is estimated to be 83,000MW. So, hydroelectricity -- if you combine these two, it goes up to nearly 1,23,000 MW. If you have this potential with us, it is sitting there in front of us, why are we not tapping that and rather instead going into such deals in the name of nuclear energy? So I think we must set that question apart. It is not the compulsions of our energy requirement that is making us to go into the deal. If that is not the case, then comes the next question: What are the other compulsions? And there when we come down to the other compulsions and that is where I would also like to make this point once again, Sir, it has been almost, I think, more than two decades since the United States has added any new nuclear power generation in its own country. Now, Why, Sir? If nuclear energy is the source that we are relying on for our future, why is this source from which we are making this deal, that country has abandoned any further production of nuclear energy? More than two decades! It is because there are problems associated disposing of the used fuel, and the question of environmental problems. How do you take care of these issues? Because of that the United States has stopped it. And if we are pursuing that today, what is the meaning, Sir? If energy requirements are not the need, as I argued earlier, if we are pursuing this course when the United States itself has abandoned that course, then the only conclusion I can draw is that you are actually providing a market for the production of nuclear reactors and their material for the United States of America at the expense of my country, its sovereignty and a proper cost analysis of our energy requirement. Now, that is a serious matter, Sir, which I want this Government to seriously consider. Having said that, let us now come to the basic issues that the Prime Minister had raised in his August 17 reply here in this House, which I had at least -- most of us -- actually welcomed. There, Sir, the first two points actually relate to the strategic independence of our nuclear programme and an independent foreign policy. Here I quote what the Prime Minister had said. He said, "I assure the Parliament that Separation Plan would not adversely affect our strategic programme. I reiterate that commitment today."
(Contd by 2X)
SHRI SITARAM YECHURY (CONTD.): Then, further, Sir, with regard to the Foreign Policy the Prime Minister stated, "We reject the linkages of any extraneous issues to the nuclear understanding, India's Foreign Policy will be decided on the basis of Indian national interest alone. Very good, Sir, we had agreed to that. But if you look at Section 102, Clause 6, it states clearly and Sub-Clause (b) says about India, "The country has a functioning and an uninterrupted democratic system of Government -- please underline the next line -- has a foreign policy that is congruent to that of the United States and is working with the United States on key foreign policy initiatives related to non-proliferation. That may be okay. But to be classified as a country being congruent, a foreign policy being congruent to that of the United States is something which, I think, in the same spirit of nationalism, in the same spirit of integrity that we are talking of, is something, which no nationalist Indian would be willing to accept, being defined by the United States as being a congruent in terms of its foreign policy protection. Then, later, Sir, in the same Section (d) it says and I am quoting, Sir, that "India would give greater political and material support to the achievement of United States global and regional non-proliferation objectives." Now, what else does this mean other than that they are expecting India to actually dove-tail to the US strategic objectives globally, regionally of course? And this sort of a dove-tailing and expecting India to be part of that dove-tailing is essentially a constriction on the pursuit of an independent foreign policy by us. Needless to add, Sir, that independent foreign policy is an important element of the Common Minimum Programme, that is the basis for this Government to function and, therefore, if you look at Section 102 and 103, and only to save time I am not quoting through that, but if you permit, then I will. But in both these sections, in section 103, if you permit me I will just want to go through one point that "Pending implementation of multi-lateral moratorium described in paragraph 1 earlier or the treaty described in paragraph 2 encourage India not to increase the production of fissile material at unsafeguarded nuclear facilities." Now, what is wrong with this is, -- since an hon. Member had asked, 'what is wrong with this?' -- my entire position is that these are decisions we take, precisely. My entire problem is why should any other country tell me what to do and that is the point. The point is not whether they are telling you right or wrong. The point is, are we today to accept what they tell as my national interest unless instead of my deciding so? Again, the question comes of the second issue. Much has been said earlier by Shri Arun Shourie. I don't want to repeat on that. The Australia group, the NPCR, the NSG, the Versailles Agreement, I mean, all these things in Section 104 (b), if you go into it, all these constrictions and restrictions are there. But let me not get into the technicalities. The question is the independence of our strategic programme. And all of you are aware, Sir, and you particularly, that we as the CPM are opposed to Pokhran II, we had said that India should not go into nuclear weaponisation. We are even today against nuclear stock-piling. But, Sir, I will be the last person to allow this to be done under dictates of any other country or any other part but this is a decision that we shall take sovereignly in our country and we cannot allow anybody else to dictate to us on this account. Having said this, both on these two scores, we are, therefore, apprehensive. The third issue is on the question of fuel civilian nuclear technology including the fuel cycle. Now technicalities apart, what the Prime Minister assured us in this House and I am just quoting, "The Central imperative in our discussions with the United States on civilian and nuclear cooperation is to ensure the complete and irreversible removal of existing restrictions imposed on India through iniquitous restrictive trading regimes over the years. We seek the removal of restrictions on all aspects of cooperation and technology transfers pertaining to civil nuclear energy ranging from nuclear fuel, nuclear reactors, to re-processing spent fuel, i.e. all aspects of the complete nuclear fuel cycle." (Contd by NBR/2Y)
SHRI SITARAM YECHURY (CONTD.): But, what does Section 103(a)(5) of the Hyde Act tells us? I am not quoting the whole Section to save time. It says, "Given the special sensitivity of equipment and technologies related to the enrichment of uranium, the reprocessing of spent nuclear fuel and the production of heavy water, work with members of the NSG, individually and collectively, to further restrict..." -- please underline this -- "...the transfers of such equipment and technologies, including to India." So, the full nuclear cycle which we have been promised is under question mark.
Then, Sir, Section 104 gives clear details of what can be given and what cannot be given. In essence what it means is that no Indian entity can access any of these above dual-used technologies, denying India the access to full civilian technology, including fuel cycle. This runs contrary to the assurance of the Prime Minister has given. How are we going to circumvent this? That is our point of concern.
The fourth point is, I still remember, very passionately the hon. Prime Minister stated and I applauded at that point of time when he said that this is a treaty in perpetuity and not an annual treaty. And, therefore, the annual certification by the US President is something not acceptable to us. Very true, Sir. Now, the word 'certification' has been changed to, I think, 'assessment.'
DR. MURLI MANOHAR JOSHI: It is 'determination.'
SHRI SITARAM YUCHURY: Whatever it may be, Sir. With apologies to Shakespeare, like a rose smells -- I mean, whatever name you call it by, say, certification, assessment, verification, it also smells foul. That is why this is, once again, an issue of binding or non-binding. I am only quoting the hon. Prime Minister. We have made it clear to the United States our opposition to these provisions even if they are projected as non-binding, Mr. Singhvi, please note, even if they are projected as non-binding on India as being contrary to the letter and spirit of the July Statement. We do not wish to diminish a permanent waiver authority into an annual one.
Now, Section 104(g) tells you exactly opposite of how they would want not only the certification but also of the information on nuclear activities of India, how they will be monitored and then I quote from it. Section 104(g)(2)(E) says, "an assessment of whether India is fully and actively participating in United States and international efforts to dissuade, isolate, etc." None of us is familiar with them. This sort of the thing is, again, runs directly in contradiction to the assurance that the hon. Prime Minister has given. This is another cause of our concern.
Sir, point number 5 is that the hon. Prime Minister in Parliament said that there would be one time change in the US Laws and India accepting IAEA safeguard in perpetuity. I quote what the hon. Prime Minister has said. He said, "Before voluntarily placing our civilian facilities under IAEA safeguards, we will ensure that all restrictions on India have been lifted." These references have been made by Shri Arun Shourie. I am not referring to them to save time. This is, again, challenged by the Hyde Act. This is an assurance that is again been violated.
sixth point is about India-specific IAEA additional protocol. The hon. Prime Minister had stated and I
quote, "In the Separation Plan, we have agreed to conclude an India-specific
safeguards agreement with the IAEA. The
question of an Additional Protocol will arise only after the India-specific
safeguard agreement is in place. As a
country with nuclear weapons, there is no question of India agreeing to a
Safeguards agreement or an Additional Protocol applicable to non-nuclear weapon
States of the NPT." And then what
Section 104 (b)(3), which deals with waiver authority and congressional
approval, say? It says and I quote,
"India and the IAEA are making substantial progress toward concluding on Additional Protocol..." -- I mean, they are saying that we are already on the process; what we said is that we will not do till reciprocity is maintained -- "...consistent with IAEA principles, practices, and policies that would apply to India's civil nuclear program." Again, Sir, I am quoting the term 'Additional Protocol' from Section 110(1) which deals with Definitions. It says, "the term 'Additional Protocol' means a protocol additional to a safeguards agreement with the IAEA, as negotiated between a country and the IAEA based on a Model Additional Protocol as set forth in IAEA information circular 540." (CONTD. BY "2Z")
SHRI SITA RAM YECHURI (CONTD.): .... which essentially and mainly deals with non-nuclear weapons States. And, therefore, again, that means 'specifically modified additional protocol' which is applied to the non-nuclear weapon States, and not as in India's specific additional protocol. This, again, runs contrary to the assurance that we were given.
Then, Sir, I come to the seventh assurance on the 'fuel supply guarantee'. The Prime Minister, I am quoting, had stated graciously, here in this House, "Separation Plan includes elaborate fuel supply assurances given by the United States. An important assurance is the commitment of support for India's right to build strategic reserves of fuel over the lifetime of its nuclear reactors." Now, again, what does section 102 say? It says, "The United States should not seek to facilitate or encourage the continuation of nuclear exports to India by any other party if such exports are terminated under the United States law." So, it is very clear. If they terminate it for political reasons, they will also make sure that nobody else gives us this. So, this runs completely contrary to the assurances on fuel supply guarantee.
Then, as we have mentioned earlier, we were also very proud, when we heard our hon. Prime Minister saying, "We will not allow the US Inspectors to roam around our facilities." And, in fact, he said, "Therefore, there is no question of accepting other verification measures of third country inspectors to visit our nuclear facilities, outside the framework of the India-specific safeguards agreement". Section 104 on the Nuclear Export Accountability Programme, I am on the section B of that. Section A is general, section B gives you the specific measures and they give you clearly that they will enforce such inspections if it is in their interest. Now, this also runs contrary to the assurances given to us.
Finally, I come to the ninth assurance -- it is related to the assurance that is given, and which has been referred to also -- 'The Proliferation Security Initiative'. In fact, the Prime Minister had said, I am quoting, "The Proliferation Security Initiative is an extraneous issue, as it is outside the framework of the July 18 Joint Statement. Therefore, we cannot accept it as a condition for implementing the July Statement. Separately, the Government has examined the PSI." Now, section 103 Statement of Policy (b) says, "(3) Secure India's --- (A) Full participation in the Proliferation Security Initiative, etc....." This has been quoted by my hon. colleagues. So, I am not going into those. But I agree that this is an area of concern. In continuation of this, section 115 -- it is a new addition that has been made -- is something, which is very, very disturbing. Section 115, now 109, says, "The Secretary of Energy, acting through the administrator of the National Nuclear Security Administration, shall establish a cooperative threat reduction programme to pursue jointly with scientists from India and the United States a program to further common non-proliferation goals". You can get it from the NNSAs website. It is a Mission Statement. I am just quoting point Nos. 1 and 2 only; there are six of them. I quote, "The mission of the NNSA is: (a) To enhance United States national security through the military application of nuclear energy; (b) To maintain and enhance the safety, reliability and performance of the United States weapons stockpile, including the ability to design, produce, and test, in order to meet national security requirements." We have, now, been drawn into the vertex of the US nuclear strategies and the US nuclear strategic positions. Now, that is something, which we think, India can least afford to get into it. Therefore, I would actually want from the hon. Prime Minister -- coming back to the basic question -- is that let us not hair split on the definitions whether it is mandatory, non-mandatory, obligatory, or not. The question is that Common Minimum Denominator, it is not the Common Minimum Programme at this state, but the Common Minimum Denominator on the Indo-US Nuclear Deal is that the assurances that the Prime Minister had made to this House on August 17, 2006. These are the assurances, which, in my opinion, cannot be violated. (Contd. By 3A)
SHRI SITARAM YECHURY (CONTD.): They are inviolable. If these assurances are inviolable, and if the 123 Agreement cannot ensure the inviolability of these assurances, then, we should only come to the conclusion what the hon. Prime Minister himself said on the last occasion, that we draw the necessary conclusions, which only means that this deal is not in India's interest, and, therefore, it cannot be accepted. And that is the assurance we want the Prime Minister and the Government to give this august House. It is only a request that before anything is inked on that count, we once again come back here and take the confidence of the House. With that appeal to the Government and the hon. Prime Minister, through you, I only wish that once again, the Prime Minister would be able to satisfy us by telling us that this will not happen. Thank you, Sir. (Ends)
SHRI N. JOTHI (TAMIL NADU): Mr. Chairman, Sir, on behalf of the AIADMK Party I wish to participate in this debate. Sir, ever since the formation of the UPA Government, quite often, especially, for the past few weeks, this Government has been in the dock on this issue. Sir, explanations after explanations are being given, both by Members, as well as, by the Prime Minister, on the ground that they are patriotic, "we will wriggle out if problem arises. We will not go against the sovereignty
(MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN IN THE CHAIR)
of this country. We will safeguard the interest of this country, please believe us." This is what they are saying repeatedly. Sir, we are not less patriotic than you. We are also patriotic like you. There is no need to speak sentimentally here. There is no need to say, 'please believe me'. Your activities and your actions should be in such a way ....
SHRI V. NARAYANASAMY: Nobody is speaking sentimentally. ...(Interruptions)...
SHRI N. JOTHI: I will tell finally who spoke sentimentally. Sir, the Government cannot be run on mere assurances. People should believe their work. We, in Opposition, should also believe the Government. ...(Interruptions)... Sir, deliberately, two persons are interrupting. I can name them also.
MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: Don't name them. You cannot name them. ...(Interruptions)... No; no. Please sit down. ...(Interruptions)... Mr. Naryanasamy, please listen. ...(Interruptions)...
SHRI V. NARAYANASAMY: One cannot speak in the air. ...(Interruptions)...
MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: Mr. Narayanasamy, this is a very serious debate. ...(Interruptions)... Please sit down. ...(Interruptions)... Mr. Jothi, you stick to your subject. ...(Interruptions)...
SHRI N. JOTHI: If they want their presence to be noted by the Prime Minister...
MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: Don't go into all these extraneous matters.
SHRI N. JOTHI: Sir, this Government, instead of repeatedly saying, 'please believe us' should exhibit itself in such a way that we do not debate this issue once again in future. That should be the attitude of this Government. Sir, the Bill passed by the USA is termed as the Henry J. Hyde, United States-India Peaceful Atomic Energy Cooperation Act of 2006. In short, it is called the Hyde Act. It is opposed by scientists. All over India, scientists are opposing it. Public are opposing it. Opposition parties, including the CPI, and CPI (M) are opposing it. We are opposing it. But, still the UPA Government wants to tell us, 'please believe us.' Why are we opposing it, Sir? It is not that we are less patriotic to oppose it. We are equally, more patriotic than you to oppose it. Sir, the title of the Act passed by the American Congress seems to be very appropriate. I am reminded of a Non-Detail in my school days, called, Dr. Jekyll and Hyde by Mr. R.L. Stevenson. He is the single person with two personalities. During the daytime, he will be Dr. Jekyll. He will be helping people, a good person; a good-natured person. At night, he will be a killer. (Continued by PK/3b)
SHRI N. JOTHI (CONTD.): Mr. Hyde is a very good name. It is a very appropriate name. No other name could fit into this Bill. On the one face of it, the Bill looks very good. To whom does it look good? It looks good to the Americans. On the other face, it looks very bad, ugly and killer like. To whom does it look bad? To the Indians it looks bad. This Bill has correctly been titled as Hyde Act. It has got hidden agenda; it has many things to hide. Sir, so many things have been very explicitly discussed here. Let me not repeat them. But in contents, if you look at, our sovereignty will not be bartered. We will not allow our military strategy, defence strategy, to be inroaded by them. It would be purely civilian. That is what they say. There is a shortage of uranium. We need this energy; so, we need an agreement with Americans. This is what in a nutshell they could say. In reality, Sir, what are Americans going to do? They will give supply only for two years. It will be repeated only after two years. They will not give in bulk. Initially, they will give only for two years. They will extend it two years onwards. So, it is instalment-based uranium supply, thereby, watching your activities. In response to that, what are we going to do them? It is something like what we call in Tamil. "You bring your grain, I will bring my chaff. We will mix it. We will segregate it and eat it off." This Agreement is like that. They are bringing chaff and we are going to give them grains. We will mix them. They will, thereafter, segregate them. Then, both of us will take half-half. This is exactly what this Agreement is. Sir, we are not saying anything against the hon. Prime Minister personally. But, genuinely we feel, bona fide we feel, this Government is under pressure from foreign elements. They are under pressure. Please come and tell us what the pressure is. Please reveal it. You need not act under the pressure of the foreign elements. Please don't barter our sovereignty. Repeatedly, we are telling you, "take us into confidence." If the Government wants to continue for some more years, we will help you. But come up truthfully to us. Please take us into confidence. Every time, you come and give explanation...(Interruptions).. This is the problem with these people...(Interruptions).. They don't want anything from here, but they want everything from America, foreign elements...(Interruptions).. "We don't want anything from Indians; we are now allowing foreign elements."(Interruptions).. Yes, they do not want any help from us, they want every help from foreigners -- foreigners to lead them and foreigners to run the Government. Sir, this foreign element is embedded in them. Some transformation has taken place in the Congress Party. I am very sorry to say this.
Sir, scientists had met the hon. Prime Minister. With folded hands, they said to the hon. Prime Minister "Please don't proceed with this." Explanations were again offered. Explanations are being offered here on the floor of this House. Explanations are being given in media, and you are saving yourselves much day in and day out. Much energy is being spent on this deal than focussing on other developmental activities. That is the problem with this Government. We are having problems of the workers. We are having problems of so many people and so many matters. And, the top leaders of the party are spending their energy on this Treaty, instead of concentrating on other matters. That is the reason, Sir, why we suspect the bona fides. There is something very strange which is going on. Something very strange is going on. Some hidden agenda is there to barter our sovereignty. This is what we are suspecting you. There is no point in saying: "I am opening my heart. Please look into it. I am like Hanuman. Open and see Rama in it." This is not the way, Sir. (Contd. by 3C/SKC)
SHRI N. JOTHI (CONTD.): Have interactions with us. Call for all-party meetings; invite all the parties in India recognised by the Election Commission of India. Have a debate with them; have clause-by-clause discussion with them. Let us debate it here and then, finally, let us have a consensus. Please, don't say that 'we would walk out of it'. At what stage will you walk out? Will you walk out after everything has been said and done? Will America allow you to walk out? We have seen what happened in Iran and Iraq; we have seen how America behaved with them. We are only saying that if it is not good, and when we are saying it is not good, please don't criticise us. Don't say 'sentimentally' -- Mr. Narayanasamy said 'sentimentally'; I shall come to that; I shall not remain without debating on that.
MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: No, no, please don't go to Narayanasamy! Please, come to the Nuclear Bill. (Interruptions) This discussion was meant for two-and-a-half hours; we have already exhausted two-and-a-half hours' time.
SHRI N. JOTHI: Sir, the question is whether our sovereignty and independence would continue or not. That is the question.
SHRI V. NARAYANASAMY: People have given us the mandate (Interruptions) This is not the way to speak.
SHRI N. JOTHI: This is the problem with them. (Interruptions)
MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: Mr. Narayanasamy, if you could keep quiet, he would finish his speech.
SHRI N. JOTHI: If the UPA Government thinks that because the people have given them the mandate and because they are running the Government they could do anything with their collars up, and do whatever they wish, we are sorry to say, that is not democracy. You must be aware of the minimum elements of democracy. This is not democracy. Democracy means, to have common discussion taking even the Opposition into confidence, especially in national and international affairs. They are having the Common Minimum Programme with other parties supporting them from outside. I have heard what Yechuryji has said; I hear daily to what Brindaji keeps saying to the media; and they are not sparing the Government! (interruptions) Sir, they are people of intolerance. (Interruptions)
MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: Mr. Jothi, don't take note of all this. You have to speak on Nuclear Cooperation, and not on anything else.
SHRI N. JOTHI: Sir, I cannot shut... (Interruptions)
MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: That way we will not be having a useful debate. Please, come to the point. You cannot go on like this; you have to come to the subject.
SHRI N. JOTHI: Sir, this is my subject! (Interruptions) Sir, Prime Minister after Prime Minister, starting from Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, to Mr. V.P. Singh, and even Mr. Narasimha Rao, have not had any kind of talks with other countries on the nuclear issue. They have said that because of depleted supply they wish to have a bilateral arrangement with the USA. What kind of a nation are you going to have an agreement with? How have they treated other nations? How have they behaved with others? Have you ever thought about it? Are they being friendly with other countries? Other than being dominating, what has America done? What is America doing except policing the world?
Sir, the might of money and the might of power may lure you. But, kindly have a look at the statue of Mahatma Gandhi. You have all forgotten him. He would be twisting in his grave at the manner in which you are behaving!
SHRI B.S. GNANADESIKAN: Sir. let us talk about the policy. Why should he attack us?
MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: This is his subject!
SHRI B.S. GNANADESIKAN: Sir, what is this? (Interruptions) He is attacking us.
MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: This is his subject! Attacking is his subject! (interruptions)
SHRI B.S. GNANADESIKAN: Sir, you have to control him. He is attacking us. (Interruptions)
MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: Mr. Gnanadesikan, please sit down.
SHRI N. JOTHI: Sir, sections 103, 104, 105 and 106 have all been discussed thoroughly.
MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: What else remains to be done then? (Interruptions) (Followed by 3d)
SHRI N. JOTHI: What we have to discuss is this vital clause 106, the grey area. Please believe me, I will not ditch this country; please believe me, I will contact you again; please believe me, and if you don't, then walk out. What is this, Sir? How long can you go on hearing this kind of thing? ..(Interruptions)..
MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: Please conclude. ..(Interruptions)..
SHRI N. JOTHI: Sir, a regional party doesn't mean that they could be curtailed like this. Sir, we are entitled to speak. This type of time constraint is not for other parties; this type of time constraint is not set for anybody, why is it for me only? ..(Interruptions)..
MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: Mr. Jothi, you cannot cast aspersions. It is an agreed system which we follow. If sometimes the Chair is liberal, then it doesn't mean that you can cast aspersions on the Chair. There is a time constraint. The time is given and you should adhere. It is the duty of the Chair to regulate it. Don't go on saying that others are given time, but you are not. That is not correct. ..(Interruptions)..
SHRI N. JOTHI: I was talking about the equal opportunity. ..(Interruptions)..
MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: Equal opportunity doesn't mean that you will go on saying everything. ..(Interruptions)..
SHRI N. JOTHI: Sir, regarding the constraints on the part of the whole issue, even now the doubts are being expressed as to how long the inspection will take place, how far we will go, whether indigenous matters will again be looked into by them or we can go ahead with our indigenous programme. These are the areas yet to be clarified. I appeal to the Prime Minister and the ruling Party to debate here every clause of the Agreement. Please table it here. Debate on every clause threadbare, and in both the Houses. Apart from House discussion, discuss it in all-party meeting all over India because it is a very important treaty. Please have it. Another thing is that, our leader in a statement pointed out an important lacuna, namely, like America, we don't have a system to discuss the treaties and agreements on the floor of the House. This is the problem in our Constitution. We must discuss on that. We must discuss this agreement. ..(Interruptions)..
SHRIMATI S.G. INDIRA: How can he ..(Interruptions)..
MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: He doesn't need your assistance. ..(Interruptions).. Please go on. ..(Interruptions)..
SHRI N. JOTHI: Sir, kindly assist me, Sir, if I refer to them again, ..(Interruptions)..
MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: Please don't refer.
SHRI N. JOTHI: I have to. Sir, what is the purpose of the Opposition? There is a saying in Thirukkural also. It says, "A king should often be told by others, especially the opponents how the king should rule the country, then only the king can rule well." Unless we tell them, what they should do, they may not be knowing because they are kneeling and persuading with folded hands before America. Please stop that. (Time-bell).
MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: Please conclude.
SHRI N. JOTHI: Just two minutes. Sir, regarding sentiments, last occasion, with choked voice, the hon. Prime Minister has said that he is a son of a freedom fighter. I respect that. He said, he would be more patriotic than anyone else. I respect that. Hon. Prime Minister, Sir, your sentiments alone are not sufficient in this matter. We need statements in this matter. Your sentiments alone will not serve, statements will alone serve. Thank you. (Ends) (Followed by 3e/SK)
DR. P.C. ALEXANDER (MAHARASHTRA): Thank you, Sir. In the morning session, Members of the House had the privilege of listening to one of the most masterly speeches ever heard in this House on the Indo-US nuclear deal from Arun Shourie. I may well add, we are not likely to have another opportunity to have such a speech being heard in this House because he placed all the issues before the House for its consideration after conducting very painful research into all the relevant documents. In fact, many things I wanted to say, fortunately, had been covered more efficiently by my younger colleague on that side of the House, and, therefore, I am not going to deal with them at length. I will come straightway to the present position that we find ourselves in and how we can get out of it with grace. I have a feeling, Sir, that a needless controversy has been created on this nuclear deal by a series of mistakes or mishandlings. In the very first place, we should have tried for a consensus on this issue among all the Members of the House irrespective of parties. The tradition in our country in the post- independence period has been totally in favour of having a consensus on foreign policy issues or on issues dealing with our relations with foreign countries on economic, scientific or nuclear-type of cooperation or any other type of cooperation. But, unfortunately, I find that this opportunity was missed. I can say, Sir, from personal knowledge, and I am sure my old friend, Dr. Manmohan Singh, would also endorse this thing, when Prime Minister Indira Gandhi was dealing with some of the most delicate issues of concern to the nation, she used to meet the Members of the Opposition party very often, one-by-one, and have hearty discussion with them and try her best to evolve a sort of understanding among all the sections in the Opposition. Unfortunately, this has not been done for a variety of reasons and that is one main reason I find for the state of confusion that prevails among the Members while dealing with the subject. The second confusion arose because the delegation led by our Prime Minister, visited Washington for three to four days. The United States Government presents a draft of a joint statement to him. In the normal course, he should have been advised by his colleagues and experts accompanying him to take that document and tell his counterpart, the President of the United States, "Yes, we have seen the Draft. I would like to have some time to examine it and I will come back to you. But, in principle, I agree with what you say". But, unfortunately, instead of following that step, which should have been the right step to do, we went in to the stage of issuing a Joint Statement covering this particular issue of nuclear cooperation. At that time, the delegation was not prepared to handle this issue. If it had been prepared to handle this issue, or, it knew that it had to handle this issue in advance, it would have included experts on nuclear science and not merely bureaucrats or diplomats. Dr. Kakodkar, one of the greatest authorities on nuclear science now living and now in service was asked to hurry from Vietnam to Washington and express his views on this. He was not obviously getting the time required for a careful study of the Draft Report. Still, he gave his views for whatever they were considered necessary at that stage. Therefore, I have a feeling that we did not have the advantage of the advice of the scientific community, the nuclear scientific community, in the country to the extent that we should have had on an issue like this. (Contd. by 3f)
DR. P.C. ALEXANDER (CONTD.): One thing I would like to place before the House through you, Sir, is that some of these people who are now issuing statements in the Press against the 'Nuclear Deal' are some of the best brains in the country, in the post-Independence period. They are the shisyas or the disciples of the great visionary Dr. Homi Bhabha. He picked up these people one by one, trained them, and motivated them. Dr. Homi Sethna, Dr. P.K. Iyengar, Dr. Srinivasan, Dr. Kakodkar, Dr. Chidambaram, late Dr. Ramanna, and late Dr. Satish Dhawan, former Chairman of the Space Research Organisation. These were all the people who were trained by him. They were extremely respected and kept with great support and patronage by the Prime Ministers of this country in the past. Unfortunately, when this incident happened, that is the U.S. presenting us with the draft affairs, the Joint Statement, the delegation did not decide to ask for time to react to the statement, come back to India, consult them very intensely, get their views, consult others, consult people in the opposition parties, and then formulate their stand on this. Very sadly, this aspect has been neglected.
The third reason for the confusion is, if I may venture to say that, that a hype has been created by one section of the media -- those who went along with the Prime Minister. They started writing the very next day as if something very, very phenomenal for the development of the energy strength of the country has been achieved in three days' talk, and that the Prime Minister has returned to India with the key for delivering India from the nuclear winter with the solution for whatever nuclear apartheid the country would have suffered for so many years in the past. This hype that was created, in the country, on the issue created great expectations, much greater expectations than there should have been. And, therefore, when the discussions came, people were hoping that there would be readymade solutions for all the problems which we were facing in the area of civilian nuclear energy development. But when the nitty-gritty details of the experiment came to light, people started getting worried, "This is not what we were thinking about or this is not what we were told about." The only thing that kept the people's expectations steady on the Deal was the repeated assurances of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. I give my full credit to the sagacity and courage shown by the Prime Minister. The three statements he made before the House were excellent statements to create that strength of mind among the people that nothing wrong will happen; I have taken this step with these precautions, and if these precautions are not found practicable, I am not going to sign this agreement. This assurance he conveyed on three occasions before this House. Many people, including me, were happy that the Prime Minister has drawn the line, and he will not go beyond that line. But, today, what has happened is that the Prime Minister has been let down by the American Congress. And I will say that even the President of the United States has been let down by the American Congress. They look at the problem that we face from a different angle. Their problem is or their attempt is to ensure that we do not go ahead in the line of Nuclear Weapon State and not reach that stage which they may ultimately have to recognise. While we were concerned more with cooperation from the United States to see that our civilian nuclear strength advances further, there was a gross conflict in the perceptions of people in India or the authorities in India and the United States' Congress. (Contd. by 3G)
DR. P.C. ALEXANDER (CONTD.): That is why, even the joint statement which was quite fairly acceptable to the House, in general, I should say, got into distortions and dilutions when it went to the stage of House of Representatives for the drafting of the legislation. It got further distorted when it went to the stage of Senate and I should say, it got more distorted when it finally reached the stage of the joint conference for the reconciliation. I have before me the report of the final conference dated 7th December and when I read this report, I found myself extremely unhappy because this document contains something quite different from what was expected of the joint statement and this document negates all the promises which the Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, had made to this House, through the three statements which he made. This is the situation that we are facing today.
My suggestion to the hon. Prime Minister would be to come out boldly with the stand that "I have tried to get this for my country. I laboured hard and I got the cooperation of the President of the United States also on certain matters. I have always told my Parliament and my people back that if you stand by the commitments you made in the joint statement along with me, I will take my nation along with me and get it done. Now, I find that you have not satisfied the promises or commitments that were expected of you. Therefore, I am sorry, I can't go beyond this." If he can take that stand boldly, I think, it will be a good way out of a bad situation.
There are many things which need correction some of which were covered by previous speakers, the speakers who spoke before me. I will not go into them, but three points in this document really worry me and I cannot but take two or three minutes more to say this with great emphasis. It has been argued, I think, by my friend, Dr. Singhvi. He is not here. I was listening to his speech on television. It has been argued that there is always a way out because whatever may be the language of this, there can be a way out of the situation by further negotiations for the 123 Agreement. But the language of this law is so very clear. Section 104 (a) very clearly says, it starts with the sentence, "If the President makes the determination described in subsection (b)...." The President may then follow what can happen. The most important thing is that if only the President makes a determination, all these things will happen. As is explained by Shri Arun Shourie this morning, now, to make the President make such a determination, we will have to make many sacrifices which may violate the spirit of the joint statement. The President himself may not like it, but they have seen to it that the President will have to follow the line which the Congress has laid down. It is not easy to get out of that difficulty.
Sir, this is the basic difference between the Presidential system of governance with separation of powers and the Parliamentary system of governance which we follow. Under our Parliamentary system, if our Prime Minister commits the nation to a treaty or to an agreement with a foreign country or to an international treaty, it is binding on the people morally and legally. He does not have to have the opinion or the support of the Parliament or the endorsement by the Parliament or the votes of the Parliament. The opposite is the case with the Presidential system where separation of powers is the most important guiding factor. The Congress is very jealous of its powers and the Committees of the Congress are not like our Parliamentary Standing Committees or the Special Committees which pass resolutions, examine witnesses, pass recommendations, but, ultimately somebody in the Ministry will decide as to what should be presented to the Parliament in the form of a Bill that will be passed. In the United States, these things don't happen. Yesterday, I was very disappointed that the recommendations of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on the reservation for OBCs and the creamy layer which had been arrived at after meeting dozens of witnesses, had been just ignored.
(Contd. by RSS/3h)