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N-deal: 'Shifting of goalposts unacceptable'

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August 16, 2006 19:39 IST

The concern of scientist community over the American legislative shape to Indo-US civilian nuclear deal has found an echo in Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's scientific advisor C N R Rao who has said that shifting of 'goalposts' on the issue is unacceptable.

"The prime minister has to ensure that there is no change in goalposts. I hope this (change) is not done," Rao told PTI from Bangalore on Wednesday when asked about the nuclear scientists' concern over the Indo-US nuclear deal.

"If there is any change, I will not accept it," said Rao, who heads the Prime Minister's Scientific Advisory Council.

The country's eight top nuclear scientists issued a joint statement on Monday raising concerns over the possible changes in the bill by the US Congress saying it was important for Parliament to 'work out and insist on the ground rules for the nuclear deal at this stage itself.'

Dr Singh is scheduled to make a statement in Parliament on Friday on the Indo-US civilian nuclear deal, the third such statement since the agreement was inked on July 18, 2005.

The prime minister had a detailed review of the nuclear deal at a meeting in New Delhi with his Principal Scientfic Advisor R Chidambaram, his Principal Secretary T K A Nair, Atomic Energy Chairman Anil Kakodkar, National Security Adviser M K Narayanan and Foreign Secretary Shyam Saran.

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