Government proposes super regulator for nuclear energy

The government will introduce a bill in the next session of Parliament to create an independent and autonomous Nuclear Regulatory Authority of India that will subsume the Atomic Energy Regulatory Board (AERB).

India will also vigorously push its three-stage indigenous nuclear energy programme in the light of the nuclear catastrophe in Japan.

While imported reactors will have their place, indigenously-designed and developed reactors will continue to be at the very foundation of India's nuclear power programme.

These decisions were taken at a review meeting headed by prime minister Manmohan Singh in New Delhi today.

While India's energy needs are vast and growing and nuclear energy is an important clean energy option, this option will be pursued with full regard to the safety, livelihood and security of the people, an official release said.

The meeting was held amidst rising safety concerns of environmentalists and the larger public over the proposed Jaitapur nuclear power project.