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Government ready to accept any formulation on n-bill: Chavan

Tuesday, August 24, 2010 12:08:51 AM, IANS

Nuclear Liability Bill faces fresh hurdles from BJP, Left

The Nuclear Liability Bill faced fresh roadblocks today with the BJP and the Left parties asserting that they would oppose any dilution of the suppliers' liability. Both the BJP   »

New Delhi: The government is ready to consider any formulation or modification to end the controversy over the amendment to the civil nuclear liability bill, Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs and Science and Technology Prithviraj Chavan said here Monday.

“There is no problem. We are ready to consider any formulation with any modification,” Chavan told reporters.

He had earlier met with the Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley to discuss the issue.

“We are seeking to put an end to the controversy generated by the opposition’s objections to the government formulation in clause 17(b) in the civil nuclear liability bill,” said Chavan.

He pointed out that there were three formulations for the clause - one in the original bill, second on the standing committee recommendation and third is the official amendment as approved by the cabinet.

He said that the government was willing to consider any of these three or any modification, or formula suggested by any political party. He said that any such amendment could be got approved by the cabinet, post-facto.

In the original bill, clause 17(b) says that there was recourse against suppliers, “if the suppliers or his employee causes damage through gross negligence or a willful act”.

The standing committee had recommended the removal of proving intent of supplier, but the official amendment did not do so.

Also, controversially, the standing committee had said that two sections of clause 17 had to be met for having recourse against suppliers. This was also not accepted in the amendments approved by the cabinet.

The BJP had said that it will only support the bill if the government accepts the recommendation of the standing committee on intent of supplier.

The government will continue with meetings to reach out to opposition leaders Tuesday, as it braces for the introduction of the bill in parliament Wednesday.



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