News

DATE=5/16/98
TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
NUMBER=2-232336
TITLE=INDIA / NUCLEAR (L-ONLY)
BYLINE=ANJANA PASRICHA
DATELINE=NEW DELHI
CONTENT=
VOICED AT: 

INTRO:  INDIANS ARE CELEBRATING THEIR NUCLEAR TESTS DESPITE 
INTERNATIONAL CONDEMNATION.  THIS, AMID SIGNS THAT MORE COUNTRIES
WILL  NOT  JOIN THE UNITED STATES, JAPAN AND SOME OTHER NATIONS 
IN IMPOSING SANCTIONS ON NEW DELHI.  ANJANA PASRICHA HAS A REPORT
FROM THE INDIAN CAPITAL.

TEXT:  AN INDIAN FOREIGN MINISTRY OFFICIAL SAID SATURDAY NEW 
DELHI WAS RELIEVED THAT THERE WAS  NO  MENTION OF SANCTIONS IN A 
STATEMENT ISSUED BY THE GROUP OF EIGHT INDUSTRIAL COUNTRIES ON 
INDIA'S NUCLEAR TESTS.  THE OFFICIAL ASKED  NOT  TO BE 
IDENTIFIED.

NEW DELHI HAS BEEN PUBLICLY PLAYING DOWN THE COST OF SANCTIONS, 
SAYING IT DOES  NOT  EXPECT THE PENALTIES IMPOSED BY THE UNITED 
STATES, JAPAN AND SOME OTHER COUNTRIES TO HURT ECONOMIC GROWTH.

BUT OFFICIALS HAVE BEEN ANXIOUSLY WATCHING TO SEE IF OTHER 
NATIONS FOLLOW THE UNITED STATES IN IMPOSING SANCTIONS -- 
PARTICULARLY THE GROUP OF INDUSTRIALIZED NATIONS -- WHOSE LEADERS
ARE MEETING IN ENGLAND THIS WEEKEND. 

THE STATEMENT BY THE GROUP HAS CONDEMNED THE BLASTS AND EXPRESSED
GRAVE CONCERN -- BUT DOES NOT ENDORSE SANCTIONS. 

INDIAN OFFICIALS ESTIMATE THAT THE ECONOMY WILL LOSE ABOUT 
ONE-BILLION-DOLLARS IF NO OTHER COUNTRIES IMPOSE SANCTIONS OR 
CANCEL AID. B UT ANALYSTS PREDICT IT COULD BE MUCH HIGHER. 

// OPT // THE IMPACT OF THE SANCTIONS IS STILL NOT CLEAR.  THE 
RUPEE FELL THIS WEEK BECAUSE OF FEARS INDIA COULD LOSE BILLIONS 
OF DOLLARS IN POTENTIAL INVESTMENT AND FOREIGN AID.  BUT AT THE 
SAME TIME, INDIA'S STOCK MARKETS REMAINED BUOYANT IN THE BELIEF 
THAT SANCTIONS WILL  NOT  BE DAMAGING., // END OPT // 

MEANWHILE THE BHARATIYA-JANATA-PARTY OBSERVED SATURDAY AS A "DAY 
OF PRIDE" TO CELEBRATE INDIA'S NUCLEAR TESTS.  ACROSS THE NATION,
PARTY ACTIVISTS SET-OFF FIRECRACKERS AND DISTRIBUTED SWEETS, 
CALLING THE DAY A VICTORY DEMONSTRATION FOR THE NATION'S "MOMENT 
OF GLORY."

                        /// REST OPT ///

THE GOVERNMENT HAS RECEIVED STRONG DOMESTIC BACKING FOR THE 
NUCLEAR TESTS.  PEOPLE ARE HAILING THE ACHIEVEMENTS OF THE 
NATION'S SCIENTISTS AND PRAISING THE GOVERNMENT FOR STANDING UP 
TO INTERNATIONAL OPPOSITION IN CONDUCTING THE TESTS.

BUT NEW DELHI ALSO WITNESSED AN ANTI-NUCLEAR PROTEST ON SATURDAY 
AS A GROUP OF ABOUT 300 PEOPLE MARCHED THROUGH THE CAPITAL'S 
STREETS.  THE PROTESTORS, BELONGING TO ABOUT 30 NON-GOVENMENTAL 
ORGANIZATIONS, SAID THEY WANTED "BREAD, NOT BOMBS, HOMES NOT 
TOMBS." (SIGNED)  

NEB/AP/JO

16-May-98 9:43 AM EDT (1343 UTC)
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Source: Voice of America
.