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India rejects U.S. nuclear blueprint

NEW DELHI, Nov. 25 (UPI) -- There were conflicting reports Friday on whether India rejected offers of a U.S. blueprint for separating its military and civilian nuclear installations.

The newspaper Hindu reported Friday that, "Under Secretary of State Nicholas Burns...in September presented Indian officials with a blueprint suggesting how the Americans might go about separating the Indian nuclear facilities," but a U.S. official in New Delhi said India had given it back.

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"The Indians gave it back saying they could do it themselves," the official said.

The Bush administration agreed on July 18 to supply India with nuclear technology for civilian purposes. The deal would impose regular inspections of India's civilian nuclear facilities, but not its military installations -- hence the need to separate the two.

Indian Foreign Secretary Shayam Saran said he had received no blueprint from the Americans. But reports said the Bush administration had provided such plans before formal talks between Burns and Saran in the third week of October on the implementation of the nuclear deal.

"I am surprised and sad to hear about such a report. Our government should be telling us about what is going on the nuclear issue. " Said A.Gopalkrishnan, former Chairman of Indian Atomic Energy Regulatory Board.

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