The money will go on technology development and testing, materials science research, studies on the reprocessing of fast-breeder fuel, site investigations and preliminary building work. Construction - at an estimated cost of 30 billion rupees - is scheduled to begin in the year 2001 and continue for nine years.

The government, which has funded all of the atomic energy research in the country, is now urging the Nuclear Power Corporation to raise its own funds to build and operate nuclear power plants. Although the corporation has consistently made profits by selling electricity, it has encountered problems in raising money from the market. There are proposals to invite private sector participation and even foreign investments in the nuclear power sector. But foreign investment is unlikely at present because India is not a signatory to the nuclear non-proliferation treaty.