Tokyo: Japan said on Sunday that a new regulatory body for nuclear power generation should be established by next April.

"Given the huge scale of the problem, and that the nature of the (current) arrangement has been called into question, we cannot just leave it as is for two, three years or even longer," Goshi Hosono, state minister in charge of handling the nuclear crisis, said during a talk show on a TV station.

He said April next year would be "desirable" and he "would like to see a proposal presented in early August."

Prime Minister Naoto Kan has raised the prospect of making the Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency an independent industry watchdog by splitting it from the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry.

On the new organ, Hosono said, "It is important to attempt unification of the nuclear safety agency and the Cabinet Office's Nuclear Safety Commission of Japan."

He also suggested that the new body should incorporate the radiation monitoring functions currently under the jurisdiction of the science ministry.

On whether the organ should be an independent commission separate from the government or part of the government, Hosono said, "I wonder if we can bring the benefits of both into one. I hope it will be a reliable administrative organisation which can also serve the role of communicating views freely."

The nuclear crisis at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant in the wake of the March 11 disasters has focused public attention on the issue of separating the roles of supervising nuclear power plant operators and promoting nuclear power, as both functions have been performed by the trade ministry. Karachi chief of police Saud Mirza said the assailants probably targeted the men shortly after they finished filling up fuel near Kamran Chowrangi.

He said it was too early to say anything about the motive behind the attack as the investigation was underway and details were being gathered.

As the news of the incident spread, agitated PPP workers reached the hospital seeking the arrest of the people responsible.
Amir Shah's name was among the party's senior activists and he had served at many different posts in his 18 years with the party.

The fresh wave of violence began after two days of calm in the metropolis.

Last week, around 16 people were killed and 21 wounded in violence after the Mutthaida-e-Qaumi Movement party called for a strike to protest against remarks by senior minister of the Sindh cabinet, Zulfiqar Mirza, against the party leadership and the Urdu speaking population.

The situation only improved after Mirza apologised for his remarks in a video released on all television channels and was summoned to Islamabad for a dressing down by President Asif Ali Zardari.

The government had claimed it had dispatched 500 frontier corps paramilitary troops to the country's financial hub to assist the police and rangers but so far the FC personal are yet to be seen in the city.

Earlier in the month, around 100 people were killed and over 250 wounded in the city, in four days of severe violence and anarchy.

(Agencies)