Left puts Govt in dock over US time-table on Nuke deal

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New Delhi, Sep 21 (UNI) Suspecting the ''true intentions'' of the government in setting up the UPA-Left Political Panel on the nuclear deal, the Left parties today charged the ruling coalition with following the instructions, guidelines and the schedule ''dictated'' by the US for operationalising the pact.

Talking to UNI, top leaders of the CPI, CPI(M) and RSP, however, made it clear that they are participating in the Political Panel's proceedings with all sincerity for a fruitful resolution of the differences between the Manmohan Singh Government and the Left parties over the Pact. However, they doubted the government's sincerity.

The Left leaders' comments came in the wake of a senior US official briefing the NSG on Nuclear deal with India at Vienna, US Ambassador David Mulford asking New Delhi to speed up the implementation of the 123 Agreement and the US plans to formally present the deal for an exception at the NSG meeting.

CPI leaders A B Bardhan and Shamim Faizi said it is obvious that the Bush administration has set a political time-table for the completion of the Indo-US nuclear deal before Mr George Bush became a ''lameduck President.'' ''This is why Mr Mullford and Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia Mr Richard Boucher are asking the government to operationalise the deal by the end of 2007,'' said the CPI leaders.

''It meant that the government should first conclude India specific safeguards Agreement with the IAEA,'' said Mr Bardhan adding that the Left had made it clear that until the 15 member Political Committee on the deal completes its work, the government should not take any step to operationalise the deal.

CPI(M) senior leader and party Deputy leader in the Lok Sabha Mohammad Salim said, ''the government should abide by its commitments made in Parliament and to the people of the country and the supporting Left parties, rather than following the instructions, guidelines and the time schedule as required and provided by the US administration.'' Referring to the developments in Vienna and ''compulsions'' of the government back home, it seems that the US administration had taken upon itself the Political Process Outsourcing (PPO) and the Diplomatic Process Outsourcing (DP0) on behalf of the willing sections of India, the CPI(M) leader observed.

Mr Salim reminded the government that it depended on their support for its survival and that it does not have the support for the deal either in or outside Parliament.

He observed that back at home they( Indian lobyists for the deal) had taken upon themselves the PPO for the public relations work to hardsell the deal.

RSP leader and Rajya Sabha MP Abani Roy reiterated that if the government goes ahead with operationalising the deal, it would face ''serious political consequences,'' which would mean an ''automatic'' withdrawal of support to the 40 months old Manmohan Singh Government.

Mr Faizi said the government should not deceive the people by holding talks with the left and simulteneously take measures to operationalise the deal.

The next date for the Panel is scheduled for October 5 and that the Left is expected to submit additional notes emphasising their reservations over the deal, reminded Mr Faizi.

The CPI leaders said the 12-page UPA note harped on one point that the Hyde Act will become irrelevant once the 123 Agreement is operationalised, but it has been refuted by the US administration itself.

''Mr Boucher has asked India to come clean on its relations with Iran, however, the latter does not figure anywhere in the 123 Agreement,but it is definitely part of the Hyde Act,'' Mr Faizi said.

CPI(M) Polit Bureau member Sitaram Yechury has said in party mouthpiece Weekly 'People's Democracy' that the government should not ''succumb'' to the US pressure.

The CPI Weekly 'New Age' has asked the union ministers Kapil Sibal and P Chidambaram who are touted as ''corporate lawyers'' by the Left, to explain as to how Iran came in the picture while operationalising the 123 Agreement.


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