UPA-Left ready to part ways

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New Delhi, Sep 30: The UPA and the Left parties are likely to remain engaged on the Indo-US nuclear deal under the umbrella of political mechanism worked out by them for some more time, though both sides are mentally prepared to part ways to pave way for snap polls.

This was indicated by the Left parties who would like to watch for the government's attitude until the Winter session of Parliament during which they may take a final decision on continuation of their support to the UPA.

Talking to the sources on phone from Kolakata, CPI(M) senior leaders M K Pandhe and Mohammad Salim said, ''there is no question of Left parties going back on their position on the deal.'' They said since the last two years, they were insisting that the government could not step out of the Common Minimum Programme(CMP).

''Our support to the Manmohan Singh government is based on commitment made in the CMP and not the Prime Minister's assurance to the Bush administration.'' CPI national secretary Shamim Faizi said the October 5 UPA-Left panel meet would not come to any firm conclusion, so the process could be dragged on till the end of the month.

''But from the exchange of notes between the UPA and the Left parties on the deal, it is obvious that they have taken irreconcilable stands.'' Mr Faizi, who is also the editor of CPI weekly New Age, elaborated the UPA was not ready to budge from its position that the Hyde Act overshadows the 123 Agreement, whereas the Left held a contrary view.

The Left leaders indicated that the nuke deal might ultimately push to a discussion in Parliament during the Winter session where they would try to show that the government is in minority.

Once that was acheived, the Left might raise the issue of non-implimentation of the CMP and would use the occasion for withdrawing the support to the government.

Indeed, both the sides are mentally prepared for election to the Lok Sabha sometime in the middle of the next year, a Left leader commented.

Meanwhile, the Left parties are also doing home work on a note they have to send to the Political Committee probably by October 4 in response to the UPA's 14-page note.

Forward Bloc leader and Rajya Sabha MP Debabrata Biswas denied that there were conflicts in the Left over the issue. He emphasised that all the four Left parties -- CPI, CPI(M), Forward Bloc and RSP, would take a unanimous stand on the matter.

UNI

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