NCP counsels Left not to impose any condition on Nuke deal

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New Delhi, Sept 19 (UNI) The Nationalist Congress Party(NCP) today counselled the Left not to impose any condition on the operationalisation of nuclear agreement when it was engaged in the process of resolving the differences with the UPA government over the deal through discussions.

''The demand raised by CPI(M) General Secretary Prakash Karat yesterday that the UPA government should not operationalise the deal for six months would virtually kill the nuclear agreement, damaging irreparably the prestige of country in the international arena,'' NCP General Secretary and Chief Spokesman D P Tripathi told mediapersons at a press conference here.

He noted negotiations with IAEA must start in October for clearing the same by the Nuclear Suppliers' Group before it reaches the US Congress in March next year. And, then the US Congress would require at least three months to clear the deal. ''The whole process should be completed during the Bush Administration which has already entered its twilight zone,'' he said, adding that in view of the international compulsions, the Left should desist from putting any pre-condition on the deal ''which would hamper the smooth discussions required for hammering out the differences.'' Charging the Indian Left with ''not coming out of its perception of anti-Americanism, even after the collapse of the Soviet Union and China pursuing a clear capitalist path,'' the NCP leader admitted that there was not much difference between the thinking of the UPA and its preceding NDA government over the nuclear deal. Noting there had never been much differences among the non-Left parties over the country's foreign policy during past 40 years, he said the present contention arose over the deal only because India is now emerging as a global economy and required to take ''some drastic steps'' for that.

On the Sethu Samudram project issue, Mr Tripathi said the UPA government had already rectified its mistake and no constituent of the ruling coalition and or the Left should make any statement on the matter, which otherwise amounted to be an unfair intervention when the case was pending before the Supreme Court.

The NCP also appealed to all secular parties to unitedly contest the coming assembly elections in Gujarat to defeat the ''communal forces'' represented by the BJP and its allies.

UNI

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