Confusing signals may fuse the govt bulb- Left

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New Delhi, Oct 18 (UNI) The Left parties today asked the Manmohan Singh government and the Congress leadership to refrain from sending ''confusing'' signals on the Indo-US nuclear deal, failing which they would have to pay a political price.

All the four Left parties - CPI(M), CPI, RSP and Forward Bloc - said they would seek clarification from the government about its real intentions on the N-Pact at the UPA-Left Political Panel's scheduled meeting on October 22.

Talking to UNI, the Left leaders said the statements made by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in Pretoria and the All India Congress Committee spokesperson Shakeel Ahmed in New Delhi yesterday indicated that the Congress was out to please its ''US masters'' by clinching the deal by all means.

While Dr Singh said the process of evolving a ''meaningful consensus'' was still on it was quite contrary to what he earlier referred to as uncertainty of the deal.

Congress spokesperson Shakeel Ahmed had said, ''It (nuclear deal) is very much on... I am denying that the nuclear deal has been put in cold storage.'' CPI General Secretary A B Bardhan said sarcastically, ''Sometimes when you go on switching off and on the electricity, the experience shows that it leads to the bulb getting fused.'' Mr Bardhan said this way the Congress and the government would have to face ''serious political consequences.'' The veteran Communist said the Left parties would ask the Congress representatives in the Political Panel on what it exactly wanted.

CPI national Secretary Shamim Faizi elaborated the Left objection was not confined to initiation of talks with the IAEA. ''The Left has questioned the very concept of the stratigic partnership with US as it amounts to the violation of the CMP.'' There is a deliberate attempt to promote India's policies with US global strategies. In this regard, the recent US moves and pronouncements on Iran, Iraq, Palestine, disregard to 'look East Policy' and lukewarm attitude towards Shanghai Cooperaiton Organisation could be cited, the CPI leader said.

CPI(M) Polit Bureau member M K Pandhe, sticking to the Left position that they would react only after October 22 meeting, however, made it clear that the only way to evolve consensus was to delay the operationalising the deal. ''There is no other alternative.'' Mr Pandhe, who is also the CITU President, said they (Congress leadership) would also have to explain at the Panel's meeting what the PM and the UPA Chairperson meant by their utterances at HT Leadership Summit. While Dr Singh had said the failure to carry the deal through ''is not the end of life,'' Ms Gandhi had said Left opposition is ''not unreasonable'' and it is the Congress coalition dharma to address their concerns.

Endorsing Mr Bardhan's viewpoint, the CPI(M) leader said if the government gave in writing at the panel's meeting that the deal had been put on hold it was fine, otherwise the Left parties would chalk out some other course.

''So far the government has not communicated to us anything officially,'' said Mr Pandhe.

RSP leader and Rajya Sabha MP Abani Roy said the Congress could not be trusted until ''it gave us in writing on the issue. For one thing is sure the Congress is for pro US tilt in our independent foreign policy, which is not acceptable to us.'' Forward Bloc national Secretary G Devrajan was more forthright when he said, ''The Congress' changing position time and again simply shows that it is in serous trouble and that it is thoroughly confused.'' Mr Devrajan pleaded that it is why the Left had been impressing upon the UPA leadership to wait for the findings of the Political Panel. ''We hope that the Congress will adhere to this understanding that it would not talk to the IAEA on India specific safeguards till the Panel completed its task.'' UNI

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