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Last Updated: Friday, 28 July 2006, 06:46 GMT 07:46 UK
India cautious over nuclear deal
Indian newspaper headlines
Indian papers say there is still some distance to go
The Indian media has expressed cautious optimism over the proposed nuclear deal with the US after the US House of Representatives voted in its favour.

Thursday's vote approved an agreement to share civilian nuclear technology with India.

The legislation must now be approved by the US Senate before being signed into law by President George W Bush.

The deal offers US nuclear technology to energy-hungry India in exchange for access to Indian civilian reactors.

Critics say the deal will hurt efforts to control nuclear arms, as the Indian government refuses to sign the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.

The deal still has some way to go, even after a positive Senate vote
The Indian Express

The Indian Express was cautiously optimistic about the deal coming through.

"The vote reflects the new bipartisan consensus in the US in favour of a deeper relationship with India and sets the tone for the more demanding debate in the Senate, the upper house of the US Congress," the newspaper said in an editorial headlined "House warming".

The newspaper cautioned the nuclear deal still "has some way to go, even after a positive Senate vote".

"The two houses will reconcile the two versions of the legislation they passed. Only then can the US president sign it into a new law."

The newspaper added: "India has some problems with the language in the Senate version and these have been conveyed to the Bush administration at the highest levels in recent weeks."

'Test of diligence'

"Another victory, deal on the right track," headlined Hindustan Times.

"The impressive passage [of the bill], however, was not without some anxious moments as two of the amendments and a motion to insert an Iranian dimension managed to garner an unexpectedly large chunk of votes," the newspaper reported.

'It's A Deal," headlined The Economic Times.

Kakrapar nuclear power station, Gujarat
Energy-hungry India needs nuclear power
The newspaper said the deal was a "test of India's diligence".

" the language [of the agreement] keeps shifting, particularly in seemingly minor details, a great deal of diligence will be required in deciding what is consistent with the original agreement and what is not," it said in an editorial.

The newspaper said that what happens to the deal will test the "maturity of the Indian politician class".

"Any international agreement does involve a process of give and take. It is the political community that must decide whether the final bargain is a fair one".

"Full House for nuclear pact," headlined The Times of India.

The newspaper said India has been restrained in welcoming the result of the vote.


"The prime minister's restraint may appear justified because of the unrelenting resistance to the deal" from the main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led alliance and the Communists.

The Tribune said the "Americans... know well that India cannot agree to anything that goes to dilute what is contained in the basic document, aimed at opening the doors of international nuclear trade for Delhi".

"Hopefully, the US will respect India's concerns. It should avoid the inclusion of embarrassing clauses which India cannot accept," the newspaper said in an editorial.

The Telegraph said the debate preceding the vote "demonstrated the networking and deals engaged in by the Indian lobbyists here and the Indian American community - with the Indian embassy quietly working in the background - with US lawmakers and political pressure groups."

"Observers who watched the debate said it was only second to similar efforts by America's powerful Jewish community."

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