• The Civil Liability for Nuclear Damage Act, 2010 aims to cater to the civil requirements for victims of those who were affected due to nuclear disasters. This act ensures apt compensation as a helping hand for the victims.
  • The aim of the Nuclear Damage Act is to provide a helping hand to the victims of nuclear damage or disaster in terms of compensation or other means.
  • This act was adopted to activate the 2008 Indo-U.S. civilian nuclear agreement as the United States nuclear reactor manufacturing companies will require the liability bill to get insurance in their home state.
  • It effectively caps the maximum amount of liability in case of each nuclear accident at ₹15 billion (US$200 million) to be paid by the operator of the nuclear plant, and if the cost of the damages exceeds this amount, special drawing rights up to 300 million will be paid by the Central Government.
  • The Act made amendments in the Atomic Energy Act 1962 allowing private investment in the Indian nuclear power program.
    • The Atomic Energy Act, 1962 empowers the Government to produce, develop, use and dispose of atomic energy either by itself or through any authority or Corporation established by it or a Government company.
  • It legally and financially binds the operator and the government to provide relief to the affected population in the case of a nuclear accident.
  • It defines the share of financial liability. It states that the liability of an operator for each nuclear incident shall be:
    1. for nuclear reactors having power equal to 10 MW or above Rs. 1,500 crores (i.e. Rupees 15 billion)
    2. in respect of spent fuel reprocessing plants, rupees 300 crores
    3. in respect of the research reactors having thermal power below 10 MW, fuel facilities other than spent fuel reprocessing plants and transportation of nuclear materials, Rupees one hundred crores (Rupees 1 billion). However, the Central government may review the operator’s liability from time to time and specify a higher amount and the remaining amount will be paid by the Indian government.
  • It limits the time to make a claim within 10 years.

CSC

  • Convention on Supplementary Compensation for Nuclear Damage (CSC) is an important strategy aimed at building an effective worldwide liability regime and to enhance the supply of the compensation available to the victims of nuclear accidents.
  • A state has to comply with the norms and annexure of the CSC and abide by its rules to become an eminent part of it.
  • Therefore, the state should check all the norms of the act before planning to become a part of it.

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