Washington: Voicing concern over the delay in setting up of a Nuclear Security Centre of Excellence in India, a key Senate Committee has asked the US Government to re-programme the USD 7 million allotted for the purpose if appropriate steps are not taken in this regard by New Delhi.
   
"While China has taken concrete steps toward procuring land and developing a detailed design for building a centre of excellence, the Committee is concerned about delays in establishing a centre in India and how NNSA (National Nuclear Security Administration) would use available funding to help develop and support the centre," the powerful Senate Appropriations Committee said in its latest report.
   
If by the end of third quarter of fiscal 2012, NNSA, India and other relevant global counterparts have not finalized an agreement that specifies overall cost estimate for the centre, details how NNSA funding will be utilized and spells out all cost-sharing arrangements, the Committee directs NNSA to "re programme the USD 7 million for Indian centre to the Global Threat Reduction Initiative's Nuclear and Radiological Material Removal programme and notify the Committee as to how these funds have been reprogrammed," it said.
    
The purpose of these centres is to help implement international efforts to lock down and remove vulnerable nuclear materials around the world and advance nuclear security best practices, research and development, and bilateral and regional initiatives.
    
"The US role is limited to providing technical advice and equipment for nuclear safeguards and security," the committee said.

(Agencies)