India nuclear news and discussion

Arun_S
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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby Arun_S » 15 Sep 2008 06:18

In due time, there will be published reference made available.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby ShauryaT » 15 Sep 2008 06:41

Gerard: I have read those RC interviews and lectures, 6000 times now. I know, he claims a successful S1 TN device and so does the GoI but then goes to say, we can design upto 200KT. Why that specific limit?

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby ramana » 15 Sep 2008 07:22

Rangudu, This raj_singh is not the rsingh we are used to. This one argues wheter he has a point or not.

It reminds one of the line from the old poem
"He who knows not he knows not...."
You should have your antenna up.
-
ShauryaT, That would involve high energy physics. And a detailed explanation would violate many laws. But he is right. That model cant produce more unless it uses eniriched tamper. The max I read from Karnad is 300kt.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby Sanjay M » 15 Sep 2008 08:09

Bah, we can improve our missile accuracy, and live without 300kT

More important to get our economy going, and get the tech-transfer barriers to collapse.

Meanwhile, we can create such a level of economic interdependency between ourselves and our trading partners, that any cutoff would ensure Mutually Assured Economic Destruction

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby Rangudu » 15 Sep 2008 08:41

ramana

Understood.

Also to "raj_singh." Upon revisit, I can see why my posts may have appeared to be harsh. Was posting on handheld from airport, so had to be curt. Did not intend any malice. Sorry if any hard feelings.

As to the deal, we can see what happens if Berman dares to make a stand. It is not unheard of for maverick legislators to take a stand before elections and then come crawling back once the money taking period starts.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby sraj » 15 Sep 2008 08:52

Bush report says India complying with Hyde Act on Iran
It reveals, for example, that India has formally committed its adherence to the guidelines of the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) and Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) in separate letters dated September 8 and September 9, 2008, an announcement the Ministry of External Affairs has yet to make.

On the safeguards agreement, the NPA asserts that although the text “includes preambular language noting India’s ability to take ‘corrective measures’ to ensure uninterrupted operation of India’s reactors, both the U.S. and the IAEA have concluded that the preambular language establishes the historical context of the agreement and does not affect the obligations [on termination of safeguards] which are contained in the agreement’s operational provisions.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby Sanatanan » 15 Sep 2008 08:56

SSridhar Ji wrote:Besides, associated fuel supply for the lifetime of the {PHWR} reactor.

PHWRs use Nat U. As per previous discussions in these threads, after having got the NSG waiver, India can now buy it from any Uranium-ore-rich country such as Niger etc, as long as the plants that use the imported Nat U are placed under safeguards. (I am assuming here that I must necessarily keep up with the pretence of not having adequate Nat U in India and must hold pretty-PPT-presentation as sacrosanct). In any event, as at present, the plan seems to be to import Nat U for the India-built 220 MWe PHWRs in operation, which will be placed in the civilian list. This strategy was indicated as the raison d'être for the deal. So same strategy could be followed for the new Indian PHWRs too.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby negi » 15 Sep 2008 11:27

For fuel supply thingy.. simple question gurulog.

Under the NSG umbrella how many countries have a legal pact signed with the major Uranium /processed U producers regarding an assured fuel supply ?

Assurance is something which comes when one has something to offer which keeps the other party interested (in our case France ,RU and US will keep their end of the deal as long as economic benifits of this deal will outweigh the political stigma attached to the nuke trade ), as far as uninterrupted fuel supply is concerned no one (not even RU) is going to give it in writing to us . I am surprised that there are experts and forum members who expect such legally binding
clauses to be in place . Arrey baba look at the recent cancellation of US-RU nuclear agreement in wake of Georgia incident.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby awagaman » 15 Sep 2008 12:14

Dunno if these being poster here yet:

1. K.P. Nayyar in Telegraph on Bush admin. asking Indians to lobby with Senators to get the 123 act past

Bush taps Indians to push N-deal in Senate
K.P. NAYAR
http://www.telegraphindia.com/1080915/jsp/frontpage/story_9834755.jsp#top

2. Sidhartha Varadarajan article from his blog on the Hyde report and nonproliferation assessment:
http://svaradarajan.blogspot.com/2008/09/bush-report-says-india-complying-with.html

He has given lot many html links which are useful but I dont know how to cut and pastes these.

Bush report says India complying with Hyde Act on Iran

As part of the 123 approval process, the Bush administration forwarded a set of documents to Congress last Friday, including a report pursuant to Section 104(c) of the Hyde Act. The report's portion on Iran is likely to reignite the controversy over the Hyde Act being used by the U.S. to condition and influence Indian foreign policy because of the way it is formulated. India's votes at the IAEA against Iran are described as steps New Delhi has taken to support U.S. efforts, rather than as decisions India took based on its own assessment as the Manmohan Singh government has always maintained.

Of course each government caters to different constituencies and will, therefore, put things differently. But there is a history to the controversy over this issue.

[Flashback: See 'So now we know for sure' on my reporting of a senior U.S. official's admission that India's votes were "coerced" [http://svaradarajan.blogspot.com/2007/02/so-now-we-know-for-sure.html]; See also my interview two years ago to Abbas Edalat of the Campaign against Sanctions and Military Intervention against Iran on Rademaker's statement][http://svaradarajan.blogspot.com/2007/03/more-on-rademaker-india-and-iran.html]

At the same time, there is something positive in the latest Bush report too: an acknowledgment for the first time that India's Additional Protocol will necessarily have to differ from the kind of AP that non-nuclear weapon states sign since the entire deal is predicated on India having a set of non-safeguarded, strategic facilities in the first place ...

15 September 2008
The Hindu

Bush report says India complying with Hyde Act on Iran
Agrees that Indian ‘Additional Protocol’ will not be same as for non-nuclear weapon states

Siddharth Varadarajan

New Delhi: In a report to Congress that forms part of the ‘123 Agreement package’, the Bush administration has cited India’s votes against Iran at the International Atomic Energy Agency as part of “several steps” New Delhi has taken “to support the U.S.” in its efforts to “dissuade, isolate, and, if necessary, sanction and contain Iran.”

The report also gives more information about the steps India has taken to fulfil the commitments made to the United States in July 2005 than the United Progressive Alliance government has provided so far.

It reveals, for example, that India has formally committed its adherence to the guidelines of the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) and Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) in separate letters dated September 8 and September 9, 2008, an announcement the Ministry of External Affairs has yet to make. The report also cites, as evidence of the steps India has taken to prevent the spread of enrichment and reprocessing technology, a letter sent to the International Atomic Energy Agency by Atomic Energy Commission Chairman Anil Kakodkar on August 18, 2008 in which he indicates India’s interest in participating as a supplier nation in the IAEA’s efforts to establish an international fuel bank. None of this is controversial, though the government’s failure to make this information public is likely to provide ammunition to the Opposition.

Submitted pursuant to Section 104(c) of the Hyde Act, the report is meant to detail the basis for President Bush’s determinations that India has fulfilled its “non-proliferation commitments” to the U.S. and is thus eligible for a waiver from America’s domestic restrictions on nuclear exports to the country.

Section 104(c)(2) outlines 10 subjects where the administration is required to provide Congress with the fullest possible information. Part (G) asks for a description and assessment of the specific measures “India has taken to fully and actively participate in” U.S. and international efforts against Iran “for its efforts to acquire weapons of mass destruction (sic) ... and the means to deliver WMD.”

The report submitted to Congress on Friday says the “Government of India has taken several steps to support the U.S. in this regard and to bring Iran back into compliance with its international obligations, particularly those pertaining to its nuclear weapons programme (sic).” Apart from the IAEA votes, it cites India’s compliance with U.N. Security Council resolutions and its “strong public line of support for P5+1 and U.S. diplomatic efforts to resolve international concerns with Iran’s nuclear program.”

In its summary of the 123 Agreement, the report repeats President Bush’s September 10 formulation that the fuel supply assurances contained within are not legally binding.

In a separate Nuclear Proliferation Assessment (NPA) statement submitted to Congress last Friday, as part of the Hyde Act’s requirements, the Bush administration for the first time acknowledges that the Additional Protocol India will negotiate and sign with the IAEA will be different from what non-nuclear weapon states sign. “Because India will obviously have undeclared activities that are outside the scope of the safeguards agreement, the primary function of its Additional Protocol will not in general be the same as that of the Model Additional Protocol (that of detecting undeclared nuclear activities).” The assessment concludes that India’s AP “will probably provide some additional information or access to the facilities declared as civil, enhancing somewhat the effectiveness of the safeguards” there.

Seeking to allay fears about nuclear cooperation with the safeguarded Indian nuclear sector somehow giving a boost to its weapons programme, the NPA also notes that since “India’s non-civil facilities already include every capability likely to exist among the facilities declared as civil ... India thus would have no apparent incentive to divert material, equipment, or technology from its declared civil sector to military uses.” It adds that India’s non-civil sector already possesses the necessary capabilities “and a diversion would risk a strong reaction from the U.S. and other nuclear cooperation partners.”

On the safeguards agreement, the NPA asserts that although the text “includes preambular language noting India’s ability to take ‘corrective measures’ to ensure uninterrupted operation of India’s reactors, both the U.S. and the IAEA have concluded that the preambular language establishes the historical context of the agreement and does not affect the obligations [on termination of safeguards] which are contained in the agreement’s operational provisions.”

The NPA disputes claims by some critics of the nuclear deal that it would free up India’s own uranium for weapons use. The amount of fissile material available for potential weapons use is a function of not just the amount of natural uranium available, but also of factors such as overall fuel cycle capabilities such as the production of plutonium in reactors and reprocessing, it notes. “In this regard, [under the agreement], several indigenous Indian reactors which in theory have been available to support military programs, will be placed under safeguards and no longer be available for this purpose,” it says.

Finally, the NPA also acknowledges the ongoing dispute between India and the U.S. over the American claim to having certain “vested rights” over the Tarapur reactors despite the expiration of the 1963 bilateral agreement.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby Nitesh » 15 Sep 2008 14:06

kinda confused with the language? does it means that till now there were 22 reactors that were available for military purpose, now only 8 will be available?
The NPA disputes claims by some critics of the nuclear deal that it would free up India’s own uranium for weapons use. The amount of fissile material available for potential weapons use is a function of not just the amount of natural uranium available, but also of factors such as overall fuel cycle capabilities such as the production of plutonium in reactors and reprocessing, it notes. “In this regard, [under the agreement], several indigenous Indian reactors which in theory have been available to support military programs, will be placed under safeguards and no longer be available for this purpose,” it says.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby awagaman » 15 Sep 2008 14:11

Key word is "potential weapons use"


Nitesh wrote:kinda confused with the language? does it means that till now there were 22 reactors that were available for military purpose, now only 8 will be available?
The NPA disputes claims by some critics of the nuclear deal that it would free up India’s own uranium for weapons use. The amount of fissile material available for potential weapons use is a function of not just the amount of natural uranium available, but also of factors such as overall fuel cycle capabilities such as the production of plutonium in reactors and reprocessing, it notes. “In this regard, [under the agreement], several indigenous Indian reactors which in theory have been available to support military programs, will be placed under safeguards and no longer be available for this purpose,” it says.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby amit » 15 Sep 2008 14:20

Nitesh wrote:kinda confused with the language? does it means that till now there were 22 reactors that were available for military purpose, now only 8 will be available?
The NPA disputes claims by some critics of the nuclear deal that it would free up India’s own uranium for weapons use. The amount of fissile material available for potential weapons use is a function of not just the amount of natural uranium available, but also of factors such as overall fuel cycle capabilities such as the production of plutonium in reactors and reprocessing, it notes. “In this regard, [under the agreement], several indigenous Indian reactors which in theory have been available to support military programs, will be placed under safeguards and no longer be available for this purpose,” it says.



As per my understanding (Disclaimer: I'm no expert and haven't come within a mile of a N-bomb or other such interesting stuff) the important point is how many dedicated plants we need of military side.

If 8 plants are sufficient for our military needs, does it really matter if the next 100 plants are in the civilian side?

JMT

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby negi » 15 Sep 2008 14:26

^^ Exactly.. and even the fact we are not in a race to blow up earth n number of times , there should be an upper limit to the WGU/WGPu which shall satisfy our military need .

I for one am positive about placing civilian installations under IAEA safeguard for this would mean a more stringent enforcement and adherence to nuclear safety in civilian facilities.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby ShauryaT » 15 Sep 2008 19:11

ramana wrote:ShauryaT, That would involve high energy physics. And a detailed explanation would violate many laws. But he is right. That model cant produce more unless it uses eniriched tamper. The max I read from Karnad is 300kt.
Thanks ramana. Is it your understanding that the claim of a 200KT weaponizable device, is a TN device or a BF type? Is this also classified, if yes, I wonder why?

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby Nitesh » 15 Sep 2008 19:19

negi wrote:^^ Exactly.. and even the fact we are not in a race to blow up earth n number of times , there should be an upper limit to the WGU/WGPu which shall satisfy our military need .

I for one am positive about placing civilian installations under IAEA safeguard for this would mean a more stringent enforcement and adherence to nuclear safety in civilian facilities.


But I hope there is no upper limit on the number of reactors that will be on the military use. Because once we enhance our nuclear fleet we need to have the fissile material both for bomb making as well as keeping our naval fleet running.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby p_saggu » 15 Sep 2008 19:47

If anyone remembers Brijesh Mishra's interview on NDTV right after the 123 was negotiated and accepted (Then Brijesh was still in the BJP camp). He distinctly said that earlier we had 18 or 20 reactors for the strategic programme and now we will have only 8, so that there is a diminution of capability; far in excess of what the BJP was offering.

Can the gurus share some gyan on:
To generate more fissile material, the reactors have to run at low burn mode (is this the same as saying that the reactor is producing lesser electricity or in other words a chankiyan way of saying it would be that the reactor is functioning at a lower plant load factor or is of lesser efficiency)

Are these terms synonymous?

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby NRao » 15 Sep 2008 20:45

S.Valkan wrote:Back after a long time.

Looks like my salami slicing theory is taking solid shape.

What say you, Ramana, Alok N, JEM and others ?

Gerard wrote:India developed its first nukes more than thirty four years ago. No adversary will assume they remain 'very basic' after three and a half decades.


All said and done, perception is the key.

The public perception of TN warheads is the Tsar Bomba type, not the W-88 type.

Given the incessant negative NPA propaganda about the Shakti test ranging from "partially successful" to "it was a fizzle", all the scientific proof provided by Satinder Sikka and others would have been lost in such melee.

Since a megaton test is not feasible in this day and age of underground testing, the only way for a change in global perception is for the US ( via CIA or some such credible front ) to publicly declare that the Indian TN test was a success, and that it was indeed a sophisticated 200kT design,using boosted fission primary, and comparable to the latest nukes in the P-5 arsenal.

This will happen sooner or later, if India has indeed successfully tested a TN weapon in 1998.


The salami slicing theory was one that I did not get to follow when it was posted/discussed.

However, I am not sure my understanding of it was right - my fault - but, my cribbing against any theory (at that time in particular) was that they did not amount to J-18 (or actually NWS status).

What you seem to imply here is that the slicing - over time - will confer the status of NWS on India. Is that right? And by extension, we should not expect it as part of a 123 or a NSG deal/understanding - which is obvious.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby renukb » 15 Sep 2008 21:05

WASHINGTON: The US has said it would talk to India about not 'disadvantaging' American companies eyeing the $100 billion nuclear pie if the US Congress is unable to approve their civil nuclear deal quickly.

'Well, I hope we can get it through Congress,' US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said Saturday when asked if the delay in approving the India deal did not pose a risk of disadvantaging American companies with the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) also clearing the way for nuclear trade for the French and the Russians.

'But we have talked to the Indian government about this, and I think they recognise and appreciate American leadership on this issue,' Rice told reporters on way to Algiers Saturday, according to a State Department transcript.

'And because of that, I think we will have ways to talk to them about not disadvantaging American companies,' she said. 'But obviously, the best thing would be to get it through the Congress.'


Asked how confident she was that future governments in India would abide by the nuclear agreement as the deal was 'tied so much' with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Rice said: 'It has been associated with Prime Minister Singh. But, frankly, I think there is widespread support for this in the business community in India.'

'I think there is widespread support for it in the environmental community, even within some of the opposition I think you find support for this,' she said, noting, 'India has a lot at stake in this agreement.'

'And I don't think that the Indians would have sought this agreement if they did not see that their principal goal now, their principal incentive, is to seek peaceful uses of nuclear materials, to be able to build civil nuclear facilities, and to do that with the best technology from around the world,' Rice said.

'And so, once it is done - and I do want to emphasise we still have to go back to Congress - I think you will see that there is really a basis for a very different kind of relationship for India with the rest of the world on these issues,' she said.

Asked why the administration was pressing for quick passage of the implementing 123 agreement when a similar 123 agreement had been languishing in the US Congress for months, Rice said the two were different as Russia was already a member of the non-proliferation regime.

'I think they're different, for one very important reason,' Rice said. As Russia is already a member of the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT) and the NSG, that agreement 'will eventually improve the prospects for US cooperation with Russia on nuclear issues, nuclear technology'.

'But the India deal is landmark,' she said. 'It's no secret India has been outside the non-proliferation regime for the entire history of its programme. So, in that sense, it is more significant, from the point of view of the historic nature of the agreement,' Rice said.

Continued...

Don't handicap US firms eyeing $100 bn nuclear pie: Rice

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby Gerard » 15 Sep 2008 22:33

Because once we enhance our nuclear fleet we need to have the fissile material both for bomb making as well as keeping our naval fleet running.


The fuel for the ATVs will come from the Uranium enrichment plants rather than reactors (the Naval reactors don't use MOX fuel). CIRUS is supposed to be shut down. Hopefully it will be replaced by a larger version of Dhruva.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby putnanja » 16 Sep 2008 00:45

Don’t sign 123, says former Indian envoy to U.S.

Don’t sign 123, says former Indian envoy to U.S.

Special Correspondent

New Delhi: Lalit Mansingh, former Foreign Secretary and former Ambassador to the United States, has said India should not sign the ‘123 Agreement’ on bilateral nuclear cooperation if Washington insists on going back on its fuel supply assurances.

His remarks were made on CNBC’s ‘India Tonight’ programme on Monday night.

Asked by the anchor, Karan Thapar, how he would respond to the manner in which America has gone back on its fuel supply assurances if he was foreign secretary, Mr. Mansingh said he would have cancelled Dr. Manmohan Singh’s forthcoming visit to Washington.

Describing the government of India’s reaction to date as mild, Mr. Mansingh said that now that President Bush had sent a ‘determination’ to Congress, the issue could not be considered “internal” to the United States. “It affects the legality of the treaty. Therefore, I felt that may be our response should have been stronger — I would have advised the Prime Minister not to go to Washington to sign the Agreement — if that is [their] interpretation, that it is not legally binding,” he said. “It would diminish the Prime Minster’s credibility if he goes all the way to Washington. I think he should meet Bush when he is at the UNGA and have a bilateral meeting. But to go to all the way to Washington to sign a treaty which already is declared as non-binding won’t be worthy of the Prime Minister’s visit.”

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby NRao » 16 Sep 2008 02:33

MMS has to go and "sign", there can be no two ways about it. Uncle has delivered on NSG. Besides, it is too late to make noise now.

However, he does have the option of stating that, due to our national security requirements, only companies that provide uninterrupted fuel will be given preference.

But, they have always planned on kicking a can, so why all this noise now? IF at all a stand had to be made, it should have been at J-18. Now, if they run out of cans, they should generate more cans and kick them even further. BP will be high, but that is the side effects of such deals.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby Sean » 16 Sep 2008 02:52

NRao wrote:MMS has to go and "sign", there can no two ways about it. Uncle has delivered on NSG. Besides, it is too late to make noise now.

However, he does have the option of stating that, due to our national security requirements, only companies that provide uninterrupted fuel will be given preference.

I agree. As for buying any American reactors, insist on 5 times the annual fuel supply as a starting stockpile before any reactors are delivered.

India needs to think about setting up a strategic nuclear fuel reserve on the lines of what US has for petroleum reserves. Do not buy too many reactors until the reserve is built up.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby Jagan » 16 Sep 2008 03:26

Rangudu wrote: Was posting on handheld from airport, .


Rangudu, you need to go into BRF rehab... seriously

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby Rahul M » 16 Sep 2008 03:27

Jagan wrote:
Rangudu wrote: Was posting on handheld from airport, so had to be curt. .


Rangudu, you need to go into BRF rehab... seriously

he is actually on a self-imposed moratorium from BRF ! :mrgreen:

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby putnanja » 16 Sep 2008 04:31

French N-deal in the works

French N-deal in the works
JAYANTH JACOB

New Delhi, Sept. 15: India is likely to sign a civilian nuclear co-operation pact with France during Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s visit to Paris at the end of this month.

The pact, initialled during French President Nikolas Sarkozy’s trip to Delhi this January, is in the “last stages” of finalisation, sources said. Last-minute touches on “some procedures” are now being given.

The deal is likely to come with a “fuel supply guarantee” that is not tied to India’s right to conduct a nuclear test, the sources said. Since India won the NSG waiver in Vienna, much dust has been raised on the interpretation of such a clause in the Indo-US deal.

The French pact is also expected to involve co-operation on safety aspects of nuclear reactors, research and development, and possibly re-processing facilities, the sources said.

A similar pact has been finalised with Russia, but can be signed only in December when President Dmitry Medvedev is expected to visit Delhi.

The deal is likely to be high on Prime Minister Singh’s agenda when he holds a summit meeting with Sarkozy on September 29-30 in Paris. Before that, Singh will attend a European Union-India summit in Marseilles.

Sources said the deal, if inked, would be “commercially” and “mutually” beneficial. France, home to 58 reactors, has 34 companies variously involved with the nuclear industry, including building reactors, power distribution and research and development.

French firms such as Areva and Alstom are into building reactors. Areva is also involved in power distribution alongside Electricite de France.

It is already building a sub-station in Bihar along with Power Grid Cooperation, and will work on a Rs 129-crore power transformer project for the Indira Gandhi Super Thermal Power Project in Haryana.

Singh and Sarkozy are believed to have discussed nuclear research co-operation. One of the proposals envisages the participation of the department of atomic energy in the Jules Horowitz Reactor project, to be built by the French Atomic Energy Commission at Cadarache in France.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby enqyoob » 16 Sep 2008 05:40

AoA!

Two small steps for Adminullahs, Two Giant Leaps for PC-ness.
Jagan wrote:
Rangudu wrote:
Was posting on handheld from airport, so had to be curt. .


Rangudu, you need to go into BRF rehab... seriously

he is actually on a self-imposed moratorium from BRF ! :mrgreen:


Let's see - the provocation here is that Rangudu voluntarily explained to a worthy (im)postor (whom another adminullah describes as being, well, a few cards short of a pack) that it was because he was posting from his phone gadget at the airport that he was, maybe, a little CURT??? :roll: :roll:

I think I need to develop Aunto Abida's BRFee Etiquette on Responding to Idiotic Posts (ERIP). 8)

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby rajrang » 16 Sep 2008 06:19

Sean wrote:
NRao wrote:MMS has to go and "sign", there can no two ways about it. Uncle has delivered on NSG. Besides, it is too late to make noise now.

However, he does have the option of stating that, due to our national security requirements, only companies that provide uninterrupted fuel will be given preference.

I agree. As for buying any American reactors, insist on 5 times the annual fuel supply as a starting stockpile before any reactors are delivered.

India needs to think about setting up a strategic nuclear fuel reserve on the lines of what US has for petroleum reserves. Do not buy too many reactors until the reserve is built up.


Can India pass a law that requires companies that build a nuclear power plant in India to obtain a legal committment from the supplier's government for perpetual fuel supply? Otherwise approvals for setting up the plant will be automatically denied.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby ramana » 16 Sep 2008 06:55

N^3 you got a hat trick!Normally you try to get as many in one blow but this time a 3 in 1.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby ShauryaT » 16 Sep 2008 07:18

Do not ask me, how I managed to link ET news from the Panama Guide!

N-deal critic Berman's stance crucial for Congressional nod

The Economic Times - US Senate has scheduled a quick hearing on the Indo-US nuclear deal, all eyes are on the House of Representatives whose Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Howard Berman, a vocal critic of the pact, is yet to take a call on having a similar process. "Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has been lobbying furiously for the India deal, which appears to hinge on whether the White House can persuade Rep. Howard Berman, chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, to agree to waive a 30-day waiting period before Congress can vote on it," the influential Washington Post reported today. (more)


Editor's Comment: We are now some 50 days from the US national election. There is very little chance that the congress will pass any deal negotiated by the Bush Administration before the election. Panamanian President Martin Torrijos is in Washington DC right now with a delegation of Panamanian businessmen to lobby for the passage of the deal. My advice would be for them to wait until after the election and then give it another shot. Why would the US congress give a "pro Bush" headline to the press now? Makes no sense at all, politically speaking.

(Article Continues)



The Senate Foreign Relations Committee has scheduled a hearing for September 18 featuring the Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs William Burns but the House Foreign Affairs Committee led by Berman has not scheduled anything yet.



The Post noted that the Indo-US nuclear deal was vying with three bilateral trade pacts with Panama, South Korea and Columbia in the 110th Congress, which has listed them among its unfinished businesses.



"But with two weeks left before Congress heads out on recess, a number of Bush initiatives are still unapproved. Most notable are three free trade pacts and the civil nuclear deal with India that has been a linchpin of the administration's hopes of forging even closer ties with the world's largest democracy" The Post's "In The Loop" column has said.



Undoubtedly the focus is on Berman who as a Chair of a power Committee has a lot to weigh in and it is a well known fact that the California Democrat has expressed serious reservations on the subject on non-proliferation grounds even while being supportive of the larger strengthening of the bilateral relationship

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby ramana » 16 Sep 2008 10:30

S. Valkan, Welcome back! yes you were right about the salami slicing. It has to be by small steps. Lets see if you are right about the last part too!

BTW, I have shown your description of how Hindu concept of God works to many folks and gave them the printed copy for their education.

Don't take any more vanvas.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby amit » 16 Sep 2008 10:46

ramana wrote:S. Valkan, Welcome back! yes you were right about the salami slicing. It has to be by small steps. Lets see if you are right about the last part too!

BTW, I have shown your description of how Hindu concept of God works to many folks and gave them the printed copy for their education.

Don't take any more vanvas.



Ramana ji,

If I am not mistaken that great discussion was slightly before I started posting on BRF and checking the forum regularly. If it's not too much of a bother, can I also get a soft copy?

TIA

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby negi » 16 Sep 2008 11:36

Fwiw.. Amit it's still there in archived threads.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby amit » 16 Sep 2008 11:52

negi wrote:Fwiw.. Amit it's still there in archived threads.


Thanks boss,

I'll look it up there.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby renukb » 16 Sep 2008 13:12

India set to sign nuclear deals with France, Russia

New Delhi: France could become the first country to conduct nuclear commerce with India under recently relaxed international norms. Both countries are likely to sign a previously initialed text for bilateral civil nuclear cooperation on 30 September during Indian prime minister Manmohan Singh's visit to Paris, according to media reports emerging in the country's capital.

If it so transpires, then India may become a customer for French nuclear technology and fuel even before the United States Congress ratifies the Indo-US nuclear deal. The Indo-US deal has been responsible for India's recent emancipation from international shackles imposed on it for trade and commerce in nuclear fuel and technology in 1974, and assurances have been provided by the Indian government that it would await ratification by the US before signing deals with other countries in order that American companies were not disadvantaged.

Breathing down the neck of the French will be the Russians with a joint agreement to buy reactors and fuel due to be finalised during the New Delhi visit of president Dimitry Medvedev in December this year. This last has been confirmed by a statement made by Russian Ambassador to India, Vyacheslav Trubnikov over the weekend.

After a close vote in Vienna early on this month when the Nuclear Suppliers Group, a 45-member nation cartel that controls commerce in nuclear fuel and technologies around the world, nearly blocked the exemption sought by India to be free of impositions, a rattled New Delhi may now be unsure as to the how the deal will pan out in the US Congress, where it has to pass numerous hurdles.

With reports emerging that some senior Democratic Party members have questioned the wisdom of hurrying the deal through the Congress and a communication to the US Congress by president George W Bush suggesting that Washington had made no legally binding commitments on the supply of nuclear fuel to India, New Delhi may be looking to hedge its bets.

The Indian prime minister is due to visit Washington on 25 September when both governments hope to sign the agreement, provided it has been approved by the US Congress by then.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby awagaman » 16 Sep 2008 16:11

http://svaradarajan.blogspot.com/2008/09/end-of-road-for-123-agreement.html

End of the road for the 123 agreement -- Siddharth varadarajan

A senior scientist who has closely followed the nuclear deal told me recently of a peculiar ritual among the ancients known as the vridhrshti of the paramacharya. Here, the acolytes of a parmacharya who resists the inevitable call of nirvana dig a hole in the earth, place the reluctant saint in it and dispatch him from this world with the help of the largest coconut they can find. The parmacharya brought wisdom and clarity in his day but he has to eventually make way for others. In the same way, the 123 was needed to allow the NSG waiver to be born but it has outlived its purpose. The coup de grace could be Mr. Bush's reservations on fuel supply, the riders the House and Senate attach, India's refusal to sign a tainted agreement, or the eventual denial of permanent reprocessing consent. The only question is which coconut will prove to be the largest...

16 September 2008
The Hindu

End of the road for the 123 agreement

By undermining its own fuel supply assurances and reprocessing consent, the U.S. has made bilateral nuclear cooperation with India virtually impossible.

Siddharth Varadarajan

In a little less than two weeks, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will travel to Washington in what is being billed as a reprise of his triumphal visit of July 2005. Three years ago, he left with an agreement that held the promise of nuclear commerce with the United States and with the rest of the world. Last week, at Vienna, the second of those promises was redeemed when the Nuclear Suppliers Group waived its export restrictions for India. As for the first, the Bush administration is pulling out all the stops to ensure the U.S.-India bilateral nuclear cooperation agreement, known as the ‘123 Agreement,’ is ready for signing on September 25.

For those in India who can see what is coming, however, the sheen of this promise has already begun to wear thin.

On September 10, President George W. Bush repudiated a key provision of the 123 Agreement when he declared the fuel supply assurances recorded in Article 5(6) of the agreement were not legally binding. This formulation has been repeated in two other documents submitted to Capitol Hill last week as part of the ‘123 Agreement package’: the ‘Report Pursuant to Section 104(c) of the Hyde Act’ and the ‘Nuclear Proliferation Assessment Statement’ (NPAS). The NPAS and Mr. Bush’s letter also introduce a dangerous new interpretation of the duration of reprocessing consent rights India has under the 123 Agreement, thereby reopening the possibility of spent fuel piling up again, as at Tarapur.

The NPAS and the Report are requirements of the Hyde Act. Taken together with Mr. Bush’s letter and the State Department’s answers to the House Foreign Relations Committee’s questions on the 123 Agreement, they offer a comprehensive picture of how the executive branch of the U.S. government intends to implement the agreement once it enters into force. Needless to say, the picture is not a pretty one. And though India is still officially committed to the 123’s passage, many in India now believe the Prime Minister should go to Washington to bury the 123 and not to praise it.

The U.S. argument that the fuel supply assurances are not legally binding since the 123 Agreement is a “framework agreement” is patently false. Though the agreement is a ‘framework’ whose implementation requires the drafting of commercial contracts with U.S. firms, this does not rob the commitments of their legal nature. Indeed, the 123’s chapeau notes that the provisions spring from the desire of the U.S. and India “to establish the necessary legal framework and basis for cooperation concerning peaceful uses of nuclear energy.” The use of the word ‘basis’ is important, which is why the U.S. resisted its inclusion during the negotiations with India last year.

This legal basis is required in order to provide sovereign legal protection in the event of such contracts being violated or abrogated for commercial or political reasons, and to balance the legal nature of India’s safeguards commitments. In any case, lifetime supply of fuel for Indian reactors is explicitly mentioned in Article 2(2)(e) on the ‘Scope of Cooperation,’ and in Article 5(4) on ‘Transfer of Nuclear Material.’ And Article 16(3) explicitly says Article 5(6)(c) where the fuel supply assurances are listed will continue to remain in force even after the Agreement is terminated, making it clear that these are legal and not political commitments. If doubts still persist about the legal basis of the fuel commitments, Article 14(8) is still more explicit: “It is not the purpose of the provisions of this Article regarding cessation of cooperation and right of return to derogate from the rights of the Parties under Article 5.6.” When the 123 Agreement explicitly says that the U.S. will not “derogate from the rights” of India “under Article 5.6,” this means the commitments in 5.6 are legally binding. Rights do not spring from “political commitments” and the word “derogate” was used precisely because of the legally binding nature of the fuel supply assurances. Not surprisingly, the U.S. side resisted the inclusion of this sentence, too, during the negotiations. If it conceded the point last July, it was only because it had every intention of repudiating it by the time the approval process was complete.

But the unilateral abrogation of fuel supply assurances is not the only problem with the U.S. interpretation of the 123.

The U.S. is not a fuel supplier and even without the latest American interpretation, India would probably need to tie up supplies from elsewhere to run any U.S. reactor it buys. A more fatal problem lies in the question of consent rights essential to reprocess the spent fuel. For here, no other country can cover for the U.S. With the experience of Tarapur behind it where U.S. consent to reprocess the spent fuel has not come in 45 years, India insisted the 123 Agreement provide this consent upfront. Accordingly, Article 6(3) grants India reprocessing consent. It also says that to bring this right into effect, India will establish a dedicated safeguarded national facility. Since the U.S. said more time was needed to negotiate the technical “arrangements and procedures” under which this facility would reprocess U.S.-origin spent fuel, a period of one year was provided for in the 123 Agreement for their finalisation.

These “arrangements and procedures” are limited to “provisions with respect to physical protection standards … storage standards … environmental protections … and such other provisions as may be agreed by the Parties.” There is no mention anywhere of withdrawal, termination or suspension of consent rights. Article 16(3), in fact, explicitly says Article 6 will continue in force even if the 123 Agreement is terminated, that is, India will never lose the right to reprocess. Although Article 14(9) allows for “suspension” of the “arrangements and procedures” in “exceptional circumstances, as defined by the Parties,” it can lead to the suspension of actual reprocessing activity only if India agrees to include such language in the yet-to-be negotiated “arrangements and procedures.” Unless this is done, the suspension of arrangements and procedures is meaningless because once India’s reprocessing rights are brought into effect, they can only be extinguished or compromised by India shutting down its dedicated facility or violating agreed arrangements and procedures.

Clever legal manoeuvre

The NPAS, President Bush’s letter and the State Department’s answers attempt a clever legal manoeuvre by suggesting that the “arrangements and procedures” are not just a trigger to bring the consent rights into effect but also a switch to affect the duration of this consent. All three documents are also silent about the one-year timeline in which the arrangements and procedures have to be finalised. Whether this silence is tactical, in view of Congressional opposition, or part of a policy rethink remains to be seen. But taken together, these documents clearly hold out the possibility of future termination of consent rights. Indeed, the NPAS explicitly notes that since “Article 14 is not among those continuing in effect if the Agreement as a whole were to be terminated,” the U.S. needs to “suspend the ‘arrangements and procedures’” for reprocessing “prior to termination of the Agreement itself.”

Though India has gently contested these claims, the U.S. Congress will likely give legislative expression to the executive’s interpretations as part of the 123 approval process. Thus, India must prepare itself for the very real possibility of being asked to sign an agreement that Congress would have robbed of its very essence. At that point, silence or gentle protestation will not suffice. Any riders attached to the 123 Agreement would have the status of reservations in international law. Silence by India would be taken as concurrence with these reservations. Ideally, the Prime Minister should refuse to sign it since the implementation protocols on the U.S. side run counter to what was agreed to between the two countries. If he feels he must sign, a separate national statement would have to be issued contesting the U.S. reservation.

Of course, an agreement with orthogonal reservations by the two parties would be meaningless in political or commercial terms. Even if Congress passes the 123 Agreement without attaching riders and conditions, the prospect for bilateral cooperation is dim. This is because the U.S. (or Congress, whose approval under Section 131 of the Atomic Energy Act the administration is committed to seeking) will insist on including suspension of reprocessing consent in the "arrangements and procedures".

The 123 was needed to allow the NSG waiver to be born. Today, it has outlived its purpose. For India, S.K. Jain of the Nuclear Power Corporation (NPCIL) has already pointed out the bottom line: the purchase of reactors must be linked to lifetime supply of fuel and reprocessing rights. If U.S. reactors are ever to make it to Indian shores, the U.S. must change its policy or force India to abandon this mantra. Time will tell whose resolve is going to be stronger.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby shetty » 17 Sep 2008 01:30

Article was written by Admiral Raja Menon, a retired submarine branch officer, who is known for his incisive analyses of defence and security issues. Written before we got the NSG exemption.

Not sure if this article was posted earlier. Apologies if so.

No Ordinary Deal
By
Raja Menon

The nuclear deal seeks to give India a level playing field and it is unimaginable why politics should intrude into what is clearly a matter of technology, costs and national security

The negotiations with the IAEA and the NSG’s endorsements are about to be finalised, and the deal will come up before the nation by July. Some in the press have written that the deal will not produce cheap electricity and hence it has no utility. But what is at stake is not cheap electricity but international barriers to 21st century technological growth, access to world class civilian nuclear and space technology, and the removal of barriers to the purchase of the best equipment for our defence forces, set up after our ill-timed 1974 nuclear explosion. It is a good deal on all counts — as promised by the PM, but opposed by the BJP which made an un-coordinated, ill-prepared, abortive attempt with the ‘Next Steps’ Agreement in 2002 to achieve the same result.

In the grand stand of world politics, the chances of India’s tortoise like victory against China are fancied by all — except the Chinese and the Indian communists. Many may imagine that Chinese prosperity is based on selling millions of plastic Hanumans to India and rubber sandals and bath brushes to Wal Mart. Not so. China’s huge trade surplus comes from manufacturing based on technology purchases unfettered by the 123 clause, utilised to manufacture computers, electronic goods, medical and diagnostic equipment and aerospace parts. In 2001, China imported and paid for 227 hi-tech and dual use licenses which jumped to 7,800 in 2007, while India’s slumped from 574 in 2001 to 356 in the same period. Not surprisingly China’s high-technology industrial output went from 250 billion Yuan in 1999 to 1750 billion Yuan in 2005. Without the 123, agreement and the Hyde Act, no high-tech dual use licenses can come to India without the approval of the US Department of Commerce or the State Department, and no US company gets into this hassle unless the order is worth billions of dollars. China was never hampered by the sanctions imposed on a non-NPT power. The US now wishes to broker India’s release from those constraints. The Indian communists would rather that India remain crippled.

Many Indians who sit on the fence on the nuclear deal feel that the communists are merely being unwise and not collaborative of China’s attempt to outstrip India. But consider these facts. China’s nuclear deal with Pakistan was signed the year Rajiv Gandhi went to shake Deng Hsiao Ping’s hand in Beijing. China’s thermo-nuclear test was conducted during President Venkataraman’s visit to Beijing, and Pakistan’s only missile factory was shipped to Fatehjang, west of Rawalpindi during Jiang Zemin’s visit to Delhi. While India was extracting China’s acknowledgement of sovereignty over Sikkim, George Tenet the head of the CIA was testifying to the US Congress about China breaking presidential assurances given to Clinton about not arming Pakistan. Pakistan’s Chinese origin two stage missile to target South India was fired the month the UPA came to power in Delhi, and its Chinese assisted long range — nuclear capable cruise missile was tested in 2005, the year Wen Jiabao visited India. Many analysts have encouraged India to take a tougher stand with Beijing, but with a looming, powerful neighbour sitting in Tibet, threatening Arunachal, able to veto India’s entry into the security council, working to block India in ASEAN the ARF and other international bodies, able to finance every opposition outside India and outbid India for every nearby oil and gas field, the Indian foreign office has no such luxury, but to abide its time, gather strength, acquire technology and make friends in powerful places — all of which are being thwarted by the left.

It is true that today China is outstripping India in economic growth, albeit without political corrections. But by 2025, when and if India’s youth bulge is gainfully employed, Indian growth rates are expected to catch up and surpass the dragon. Indians with their notions of Eastern values, democracy and inclusive growth are genuinely prepared to consider the 21st century as the common Asian century. But look at the Chinese supplied missile sites around Sargodha, that target Delhi, or the huge underground ballistic missile complexes of China’s 414 missile brigade at Delingha in the Tibetan Autonomous Region, and one can see that the goodwill that the Indians show their Asian neighbours are only looked upon with cynical amusement in Beijing. The BJP knows all this only too well. They have been in government, have had access to classified analyses and pioneered the country’s overt nuclear capability. But their cynicism has been in view too, that when they were briefed by the government on how India’s strategic capability was being built up, and not compromised by the nuclear deal, they have responded with lengthy newspaper articles on how cheaper electricity could be made from coal, and by joining hands with the communists to oppose a deal which is clearly in the national interest.

The technology denial consequences of the deal not going through are even more serious. Since the Americans strengthened their Atomic Energy Act in 1978 with the NNPA, they followed up with the Export Administration Act in 1979, which was re-validated in 2004. As a result no American company has replied to an Indian hi-tech tender for 29 years. The consequences have been calamitous. Clever Indian scientists have often used Russian alternates or acquired European equivalents, at unreasonable cost. In 1992 in the high-tech electronic warfare field, European and Indian PSUs quoted Rs 23 crore for an EW set for the Navy. At the time the most advanced set in India was an American one imported in the German HDW submarine with an obviously fiddled End-User certificate. That set was acquired for Rs 10 crore. Fortunately, the Israelis entered the market at Rs 11 crore and saved the day. The absence of American competition in the high technology arena will cripple our rate of advance. The Deal seeks to give India a level playing field and it is unimaginable why politics should intrude into what is clearly a matter of technology, costs and national security.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby ShauryaT » 17 Sep 2008 01:39

ramana wrote:S. Valkan, Welcome back! yes you were right about the salami slicing. It has to be by small steps. Lets see if you are right about the last part too!

BTW, I have shown your description of how Hindu concept of God works to many folks and gave them the printed copy for their education.

Don't take any more vanvas.
I agree, no more vanvas. Although, I did not agree with Valkan's stand on the deal, as the cost paid for the piece of Salami is way too high, his expositions on Advaita was one of the best.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby ShauryaT » 17 Sep 2008 01:44

Raja Menon holds a tremedous amount of respect in strategic circles. His book, written, even before the NSSP was in place, articulated a view point even more extreme than BK. He declared that further nuclear tests are essential. He has changed his views on the matter from a strategy of self reliance through the strength of deterrence to reliance on the west - so it seems. Maybe others, who have followed him more closely can comment.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby Sanjay M » 17 Sep 2008 02:03

Anybody have a link to C Raja Menon's article? I want to post it up elsewhere.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 6 sep 2008

Postby shetty » 17 Sep 2008 02:09

amit wrote:
negi wrote:Fwiw.. Amit it's still there in archived threads.


Thanks boss,

I'll look it up there.


Can anyone help me find it? I tried but couldn't.


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