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  • July 30, 1970

    Rajya Sabha on the Reorientation of India's Nuclear Policy

    Transcript of questions and answers between members of Rajya Sabha and the Minister of Atomic Energy, Shrimati Indira Gandhi, on how to reorient nuclear strategy to meet the nuclear challenge from China.

  • July 30, 1970

    Rajya Sabha Q&A on the Financial Cost of the Nuclear Program

    Transcript of questions and answers between members of the Rajya Sabha and the Prime Minister of Atomic Energy, Shrimati Indira Gandhi, on whether to create a committee to carry out a study on the financial cost of India's nuclear program.

  • August 13, 1970

    Rajya Sabha Q&A on the Indian Nuclear Defense Policy

    Transcript of questions and answers between members of Rajya Sabha and the Minister of Defense, Shri Jagjivan Ram, on retired generals voting in favor of building up a nuclear capacity for defense.

  • November 11, 1970

    Rajya Sabha Q&A on India's Stance on Chinese Nuclear Tests

    Transcript of question and answers between members of the Rajya Sabha and the Deputy Minister of External Affairs on the governments stance of Chinese nuclear tests.

  • November 26, 1970

    Rajya Sabha Q&A on International Underground Nuclear Test Bans

    Transcript of questions and answers between members of the Rayja Sabha and the Prime Minister, Shrimati Indira Gandhi, on the current international bans on underground nuclear tests and if India plans to renew its policy on underground nuclear tests.

  • November 26, 1970

    Rajya Sabha Q&A on India's Nuclear Program in Respect to China and Pakistan

    Transcript of questions and answers between members of Rajya Sabha and the Minister of Atomic Energy, Shrimati Indira Gandhi, on the plan to continue India's nuclear policy in respect to Pakistan's promise to use American arms to resolve the Kashmir situation as well as China's latest achievements in the nuclear field.

  • December 02, 1970

    Rajya Sabha Q&A on the World Summit Conference on Nuclear Weapons.

    Transcript of questions and answers between members of the Rajya Sabha and the Deputy Minister of the Ministry of External Affairs, Shri Surendra Pal Singh, on the coordination of an international conference to discuss the prohibition and destruction of nuclear weapons.

  • November 23, 1971

    Rajya Sabha Q&A on Chinese Proliferation of Nuclear Missiles

    Transcript of questions and answers between members of the Rajya Sabha and the Minister of Defence on Chinese success in producing nuclear missiles.

  • January 06, 1972

    State Department cable 3088 to Embassy New Delhi

    The State Department asks the U.S. Embassy in India for its assessment of the likelihood that India is planning a nuclear test explosion.

  • January 14, 1972

    State Department Bureau of Intelligence and Research Intelligence Note, 'India to Go Nuclear?'

    The State Department’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research (INR) evaluates the available intelligence on India’s nuclear intentions. There were varying reports that India would test a device that month, sometime in 1972, or that the government was undertaking a program to test a “peaceful nuclear explosive.” According to INR, India had the capability to produce some 20-30 weapons, and it could easily test a device in an underground site, such as an abandoned mine, that would be hard to discover. Because the U.S. government had given a “relatively modest priority to... relevant intelligence collection activities” a “concerted effort by India to conceal such preparations... may well succeed.” What would motivate India to test, the analysts opined, were domestic political pressures and concerns about China and Pakistan.

  • January 21, 1972

    US Embassy Airgram A-20 to State Department, 'India’s Nuclear Intentions'

    In response to the State Department's request, the U.S. Embassy in India identified a number of reasons that made it unlikely that India would a test a nuclear device in the coming weeks, but saw “straws” suggesting an underground test “sometime in future.” For example, the Government of India had publicly acknowledged ongoing work on the problem of safe underground testing. Moreover, India might have an interest in making its nuclear capabilities known to “enemies.” Whatever the Indians decided, external pressure would have no impact on a highly nationalist state and society: “we see nothing US or international community can presently do to influence GOI policy directions in atomic field.”

  • February 03, 1972

    Telegram from S. Shahabuddin, Charge d’Affaires, Caracas

    Recommendation that India become a Permanent Observer at the Organization of American States.

  • February 23, 1972

    Memorandum from Ray Cline, Director, Bureau of Intelligence and Research, to Director of Central Intelligence Richard Helms, enclosing 'Possibility of an Indian Nuclear Test'

    At the request of Undersecretary of State John Irwin, the Bureau of Intelligence and Research (INR) prepared an assessment which included a detailed review of Indian’s nuclear facilities and their capacity to produce weapons-grade plutonium as well as capabilities to deliver nuclear weapons to a target. While India had signed agreements with Canada and the United States that nuclear reactors were to be used for peaceful purposes, the Indians were likely to claim that an explosive device for “peaceful” purposes was consistent with the agreements. Whether the Indians were going to test in the near future was in doubt. INR could not “rule out” one in the near future. Further, the “strongest incentive [to test] may well be the desire for the increased status of a nuclear power.” All the same, “it our judgment that a decision to authorize a test is unlikely in the next few months and may well be deferred for several years.” Weighing against a test were the financial and diplomatic costs, for example, “India's full awareness that assistance from the US and other countries (possibly including the USSR) would be jeopardized.”

  • March 07, 1972

    US Embassy Canada cable 391 to State Department, 'India’s Nuclear Intentions'

    U.S. embassy officials report on an interview with Lauren Gray, the chairman of Canada’s Atomic Energy Control Board (AECB), who had recently visited India. Having spoken with Homi Nusserwanji Sethna, Chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission, and other officials, Gray believed that Sethna opposed a test and that as long as Sethna and Indira Gandhi were in office “there was no chance” that India would test a nuclear device, which would take three to four years to prepare. Other officials with the AECB disagreed with Gray's estimates - based on their assessment of Indian’s ability to produce weapons grade plutonium, they argued that it would take no more than a year to produce a device. They also pointed out that about 18 months earlier there had been a “blackout” of statistical information on plutonium production in India.

  • March 09, 1972

    State Department cable 40378 to US Embassy Ottawa, 'Indian Nuclear Intentions'

    During a discussion with the Canadian embassy counselor, U.S. country desk director David Schneider opined that Indian was unlikely to test a device in the “near future” but he wanted Ottawa’s prognosis. Schneider was also interested in whether the Soviets, with their close relationship with India, might be able to use their influence to “deter” a test. If India tested, the U.S. could respond with a “strong statement,” but whether “punitive” measures would be taken would depend on whether the test “violated existing agreements.” In October 1970, the State Department had cautioned the Indians that a “peaceful nuclear explosion” was indistinguishable from a weapons test and that the test of a nuclear device would be incompatible with U.S.-Indian nuclear assistance agreements.

  • March 14, 1972

    US Embassy Canada Cable 430 to State Department, 'India’s Nuclear Intentions on South Asia Situation'

    Elaborating on his earlier cable and responding to the general issues raised by the Department’s 9 March message, science attaché Hudson questioned Lauren Gray’s evaluation of Sethna, suggesting that by combining “guile” and “technical proficiency,” the latter could easily have “easily misled” the Canadian. Based on consultations with a variety of Canadian insiders with knowledge of and experience with the Indian nuclear program, the Embassy saw no technical or fiscal barriers to an Indian test. Moreover, any pressure on India not to test would increase the “likelihood” of that happening.

  • March 24, 1972

    State Department Cable 50634 to US Embassy Canada, 'Indian Nuclear Intentions'

    Further discussions with the Canadian embassy counselor disclosed Ottawa’s view that it had no evidence of Indian intentions to test a nuclear weapon or a PNE. The Indians were “leaving their options open.” If they decided to test, however, it would be “impossible” for them to move forward “without revealing some indication of their intentions.”

  • April 07, 1972

    State Department cable 59655 to US Embassy United Kingdom, 'Indian Nuclear Intentions'

    The British Government took the same view as the Canadians, seeing no evidence that the Indians had made a decision to do a nuclear test, although they had the “capability.”

  • April 22, 1972

    State Department Cable 69551 to US Embassy United Kingdom, 'Indian Nuclear Intentions'

    The Canadian embassy had asked the State Department for information on the intelligence reports from earlier in the year that an Indian nuclear test was “imminent.” The State Department denied the request, but informed the Canadians that the reports were so numerous and their “congruity, apparent reliability, and seeming credibility” so striking that it had become necessary to update official thinking about Indian intentions.

  • June 23, 1972

    State Department Cable 113523 to US Embassy India, 'Japanese Views Regarding Indian Nuclear Plans'

    In response to a request from the State Department, Ryohei Murata, an official at the Japanese embassy, reported that the Japanese government believed that for prestige reasons and as a “warning” to others, the “Indians have decided to go ahead with a nuclear test” which could occur at “any time.” The Thar Desert in Rajasthan would be the test site.