Coalition for Nuclear Disarmament and Peace(CNDP)
PRESS STATEMENT | March 30, 2017
This week marks the commencement of negotiations at the United Nations Headquarters in New York wherein most member states of the UN General Assembly are discussing on a comprehensive legal prohibition on the use, possession, production, stockpiling and deployment of nuclear weapons. The treaty, if adopted, would mark a significant step towards the eventual goal of the complete elimination of these weapons of mass destruction.
For all its avowed commitment to the pursuit of universal global nuclear disarmament, it is shocking that the Indian government, to our utter dismay, has stayed away from these negotiations. So much for its avowed commitment to the pursuit of universal global nuclear disarmament, which is what this treaty is about.
The importance of such a treaty is that it would establish, for the first time, a universal and global, legal and moral principle highlighting the criminality of producing and possessing, let alone using nuclear weapons. The pursuit of the complete abolition of slavery worldwide was accelerated by the prior establishment of its immorality and illegality. This treaty would do the same with regard to the evil of nuclear weapons.
The P-5 nuclear powers have betrayed their legal commitment under the NPT to ‘negotiate nuclear disarmament in good faith’. India, while staying out of the NPT, has always made much of its public commitment to universal nuclear disarmament. It is now being put to the test of matching its deeds to its words. Its refusal to participate in the negotiations shows that it has failed this test. While Pakistan in South Asia has also refused to participate in these negotiations, three other South Asian countries, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Nepal, are participating.
We, as citizens of India, strongly condemn the Indian government and consider it our duty to oppose such abject surrender of our once held values. Now that India has joined the club of existing nuclear weapons states it is behaving no differently from them.
Kumar Sundaram (Contact: 9868153296)