Govt notifies rules: N-supplier liability to be ‘limited in time’


A liability law was an essential pre-requisite for foreign companies to engage in nuclear commerce with India. New Delhi had been kept out of international nuclear commerce after its first nuclear test in 1974. That de-facto ban ended only after the United States signed a civil nuclear agreement with India in 2008 and the Nuclear Suppliers' Group—a group of about 45 countries—made an exceptional waiver for India and cleared its re-entry into nuclear commerce.

Liability Rules

Nuclear Liability Act says operator of a nuclear facility solely responsible for paying compensation to victims of a nuclear accident.

Maximum financial liability of an operator is capped at Rs 1,500 crore. But this liability extends till the lifetime of the reactor.

In the event of the accident being caused by a defect or malfunctioning of an equipment, the operator has a 'right of recourse' against the supplier of the equipment.

Right of recourse valid till the 'product liability period' specified in contract between operator and supplier.

Operator's claim against supplier cannot exceed the total compensation paid by it.

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