After the Bomb: Reflections on India’s Nuclear Journey

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Proponents of India’s nuclear weapons programme have felt vindicated ever since the 2009 Indo–US Civilian Nuclear Deal allowed India to have access to advanced civilian nuclear technology without renouncing its nuclear weapons programme. Over the next few years, supporters of nuclear weaponisation within have gained greater importance in the country’s strategic discourse. Against this backdrop, Achin Vanaik, a prominent critic of nuclear weapons, warns of the dangers of indulging in sabre-rattling with weapons of mass destruction.

After the Bomb analyses the main flaws in the arguments favouring nuclear weapons. The volume presents ten dilemmas of nuclear deterrence followed by a politico-psychological analysis of why the Indian bomb lobby takes the effectiveness of nuclear deterrence as an article of faith. It also tells us why nations should not overestimate the danger of nuclear terrorism by non-state actors.

The author discusses the contrasts and similarities in the viewpoints of prominent advisors involved in formulating the nuclear policy while presenting an extended critique of India’s professed path to nuclear disarmament. The conclusion forcefully argues why India needs to go beyond the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) to ensure a world free of nuclear weapons.

This book is a must-read for students and scholars of political science, international relations, strategic studies, peace and conflict studies as also for every concerned citizen of the world.

Achin Vanaik

Achin Vanaik is a writer and social activist, a former Professor of Political Science at the University of Delhi, and a Delhi-based Fellow of the Transnational Institute, Amsterdam. He is the author of numerous books, including The Furies of Indian Communalism (1997) and The Painful Transition: Bourgeois Democracy in India (1990).