ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

N D JayaprakashSubscribe to RSS - N D Jayaprakash

Conning Humanity in the Name of Disarmament

One of the biggest failures of the United Nations since its founding has been its inability to halt the nuclear arms race and take any significant step towards elimination of nuclear weapons. On the contrary, the UN—wittingly or unwittingly—became a victim of a series of con games played by the nuclear weapon states. On the face of it, the latest attempt of the UN to adopt a so-called Convention on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons appears to be no different. India’s decision to stay away from the proceedings is shocking since it has historically supported the cause of disarmament.

Conning Humanity in the Name of Disarmament

One of the biggest failures of the United Nations since its founding has been its inability to halt the nuclear arms race and take any significant step towards elimination of nuclear weapons. On the contrary, the —wittingly or unwittingly—became a victim of a series of con games played by the nuclear weapon states. On the face of it, the latest attempt of the to adopt a so-called Convention on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons appears to be no different. India’s decision to stay away from the proceedings is shocking since it has historically supported the cause of disarmament. New Delhi is defending a world divided into nuclear-haves and nuclear-have-nots unmindful of the disastrous consequences.

Supreme Court's Judgment on Koodankulam Worrying Omissions

The Supreme Court of India has not yet granted permission for commissioning the Koodankulam nuclear power plant in Tamil Nadu, as its judgment on 6 May 2013 makes obvious. But unfortunately it does not seem to have paid serious attention to concerns raised by the former chairperson of the Atomic Energy Regulatory Board, among others, on the quality of components provided by the Russian supplier. It also does not appear to have had the opportunity to ponder over the fi ndings of the Fukushima Nuclear Accident Independent Investigation Commission, which was forthright in its view that the Fukushima disaster was man-made.

The Bhopal Disaster and Medical Research

The Supreme Court, in its fi nal order of October 1991, upheld the compensation settlement with Union Carbide which made the Government of India liable for any shortfall in compensation or any new claims from the Bhopal gas victims. Following this order the Indian Council of Medical Research disbanded its medical esearch on the long-term medical effects of the disaster. A recent Supreme Court order directs the ICMR to resume that research, but the question that looms is why the ICMR abdicated its ethical mandate and allowed its subordination to a political diktat. Why did the ICMR as aninstitution allow itself to become an apologist of the Indian state?

Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty: The 'Greatest Con Game'

Forty years have passed since the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty was signed. Some self-defeating clauses in the treaty have only militated against the aim of global disarmament and it is clear that the NPT as a treaty that was proposed by the major powers has turned out to be a con game. The discriminatory treaty has neither resulted in substantial disarmament nor has it helped to curb nuclear proliferation, either horizontal (which it was supposed to) or vertical (which was given short shrift in the original treaty).

Nuclear War Plan: Dangerous Portents

The urgency of preventing a nuclear war has become a non-issue with the cabinet committee on security. It is content to pay lip service to the cause of nuclear disarmament stressing instead 'overall preparedness' for a retaliatory attack. The questionable policies that the government of India is pursuing at home and at a bilateral level are in sharp contrast to the forthright stand it has been taking in several international fora, especially in the UN.

Nuclear Disarmament and India

Many people are unaware that it was India that first introduced the proposals which led to the NPT and CTBT. Subsequently India refused to become a party to either of them because of the gross changes in the original drafts at the instance of the US, which qualitatively overturned the intent and purpose of these proposals. Similarly, the CTBT - a treaty to end all tests - which was to serve as an initial step in nuclear disarmament, first ended up as a partial test ban treaty (PTBT) which left the door open for unbridled underground tests and remained de-linked from the issue of nuclear disarmament. Some 30 years later, the CTBT was resurrected, but just as before, it has ended up being yet another version of the PTBT and totally divorced from the issue of nuclear disarmament. The present CTBT has several peculiar features which give evidence of US double standards on disarmament issues. Should humanity continue to be a party to this game of deceit or should it put an end to this game once and for all and bring the issue of prevention of nuclear war and nuclear disarmament to the centrestage?

SOUTH AFRICA-Colour of the ANC

Colour of the ANC N D Jayaprakash While some dub the ANC as a 'black group' out to establish 'black majority rule' by a 'black-led government', others allege that it is dominated by 'whites and Indians'. The two contradictory viewpoints serve the same objective; to sow suspicion in the minds of both the white and the black populations about the credentials of the ANC IT is absolutely shocking to find misleading reports on the African National Congress (ANC) of South Africa by certain western news agencies being reproduced verbatim in several newspapers in India. Specific reference is made here to four such news items: (1) The Associated Press (AP) report from Johannesburg in The Times of India (Delhi) on March 6; (2) the article from the Sunday Times (London) tided 'Non-Black Domination of ANC Assailed' by one Richard Ellis in The Times of India (Delhi) on September 7 and 12; (3) the AP report from Cape Town in the Pioneer (Delhi) on September 24; and the AFP report from Johannesburg in The Tunes of India on November 9.

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