Friday, 22 July 2011

India:Hell For Nuclear Scientists~Are Indian Nuclear Assets Safe?~

According to media reports Mahalingam went on morning jogging and got disappeared. As per his family members, he did not carry money or his cell phone with him and went for walk whereas the security guards on duty said that they didn’t see him leaving the campus. It is worth mentioning here that he also disappeared 10 years back when he was working at the Kalpakkam Atomic Station. On his return, after five days, Mahalingam expressed that he had gone to seek spiritual consolation.

Nuclear Reactor Maps : India

A DNA test was performed just to ascertain the identity of the dead body. But that also raised the question: why was he cremated in such a hurry even before the results of the DNA test and the post-mortem report? The presence or absence of air in his lungs, any signs of torture on his body and the level of decomposition could have pointed to the circumstances in which he met his final end.

It is also questionable that shortly after his body was found the police announced its verdict that the scientist had committed suicide. The conclusion was premature since Mahalingam left no suicide note. Even if this version of Mahalingam’s death is accepted, the suicide of an Indian nuclear scientist who worked in a sensitive field is not an ordinary event. It points to the shaky human and personnel reliability in the Indian nuclear complex.
It must be a matter of global concern that killing of the Mahalingam is not only the first case of murder. Earlier, this year, another NPC non-technical employee Ravi Mule was found dead in the township on April 7. He too had gone for morning walk. Before that, on November 11, 2006, Director of Uttaranchal Space Application Centre, Dr Anil Kumar Tiwari, was also shot dead by an unidentified person near his residence. Police have not cracked the earlier cases and similarly are clueless in the current case of scientist. Moreover, in addition to financial corruptions, 152 theft cases of uranium have also been reported and registered with the police since 1984.
The fact of the matter is that Indian top listed companies have remained engaged in illegal importing and exporting of nuclear equipments. For example Berkeley Nucleonic Corporation (BNC), an American company was fined US $ 300,000 for exporting a nuclear component to the Bhaba Atomic Research Center in India and also in December 2005, United States imposed sanctions on two Indian firms for selling missile goods and chemical arms material to Iran in violation of India’s commitment to prevent proliferation. In the same year, Indian scientists, Dr Surendar and Y. S. R. Prasad had been blacklisted by the US due to their involvement in nuclear theft. Again, in December, 2006 a container packed with radioactive material had been stolen from an Indian fortified research atomic facility near Mumbai.
The above incidents confirm that the security of Indian nuclear programme is highly questionable. It is evident that the world’s most treacherous nuke proliferation is going on in India. The Hindu extremists with the help of Indian nuke scientists belonging to the Hindu fundamentalist organization Rashtriya Swayam Sewak Sang (RSS) have been found involved in illegal transfer of nuclear technology to Israel and some western countries through underworld organizations to generate the funds for the completion of “Maha Baharat agenda”.
The recent release of US document on the internet is another security concern in the serious circles of the Washington. The list includes both government and civilian nuclear facilities and covering the details and location of nation’s 103 commercial nuclear power reactors. The equipment useful in preparation of nuclear device is available in the open American markets and reportedly being sold to Indian organization illegally.
The release of US nukes document, selling of equipment in local American market, theft cases of Indian Uranium, disappearance and abduction of Indian Nuke Scientist seem to be correlated to each other.
Two of India’s most important nuclear installations are located near Mumbai. Tarapur’s two 160 MW nuclear plants are already functioning near Trombay while two more 500 MW power plants are under construction near Mumbai itself. These two plants are designed to work as fuel fabrication facilities and are not safeguarded under the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) nor effectively protected. India’s Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) and a number of other nuclear plants and uranium conversion facilities are also not part of IAEA safeguards. A fuel fabrication facility is also not far from the city and is considered unsafe by most accounts.
If one is to believe the Indian claim that ten young militants engaged more than 3000 of India’s top commandoes, intelligence and police officials for 60 hours and killed 200 people in Mumbai city, then we must seriously be worried about the safety of India’s nuclear arsenal, radioactive material, and nuclear power plants. Experts are of the view that if ten gunmen can hold a city of 15 million people, which houses a number of sensitive nuclear and radio-active plants, then how safe are India’s nukes?

Intriguing Role of Western Media

It is intriguing that not a single major American or British media outlet covered the story of the kidnapping and murder of a man that holds the key to the Indian nuclear arsenal with proper analysis. There are no scare stories on CNN, BBC, Fox etc about Indian nukes falling in the wrong hands. There are some reasons behind all this fact. One is that the Am-Brit media spent much of its energy in the last two years trying to scare the world about Pakistan’s nukes and how the Pakistanis are unable to protect them. Suddenly a major nuclear security breach in India surfaced. One of the reasons can be that the Americans have just broken all proliferation laws and decided that India is such a responsible nuclear power that it deserves to be given advanced nuclear technology.
Imagine if this incident had happened in Pakistan. The entire Am-Brit media would have been beating the drums of war, reminding the world how dangerous and unstable Pakistan is. Isn’t it deliberate that the western media is silent about the basic questions: Who kidnapped and later killed the Indian nuclear scientist and what was the purpose? What would happen if one of the 14 separatist movements or the Hindu fundamentalist groups in India had kidnapped the scientist to gain access to Indian nuclear bombs? What if the terrorists who have actually gained access to an Indian nuclear facility, killed the scientist and are now waiting to carry out a major terrorist act? What if any one of those Indian separatist groups fighting for the independence in 14 out of the 28 Indian states have used the scientist to sell information or nuclear designs to groups or countries that end up attacking the United States? These are the questions that not only need answers but also put the peace and security of the whole world at stake.

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