New Delhi, Oct 24: Leaders of the third front United National Progressive Alliance (UNPA) met the Left parties here on Wednesday to seek consensus on the Indo-US civilian nuclear cooperation agreement.
After the meeting, Telugu Desam Party (TDP) chief Chandrababu Naidu said that the UNPA demanded a discussion in the Parliament before taking up the implementation of the bilateral deal.
"UNPA has demanded discussion in Parliament that has to approve the government decision and that is the stand we have taken, and the same has been conveyed to (A B) Bardhan (CPI leader)," Naidu said.
The Communists also endorsed the concerns of the third front.
"He (Chandrababu Naidu) also thinks like the Left parties that Parliament must debate the Indo-US nuclear agreement. The UPA government should take the sense of the House into account before taking any decision to operationalise or not operationalise the agreement," said D. Raja, CPI leader.
Naidu later addressed a press conference to take up the cause of the farmers in the wake of rising prices. He said this party has organised a rally in Vijaywada to address the issue.
"In Vijaywada, on November 24 we have a huge rally on farmers' issue, specially MSP (minimum support price) and also paddy," Naidu said.
He went on to say that the Centre was discriminating in the support price, as they were giving one thousand rupees for wheat and at the same time rupees 595 for paddy.
“Also there is problem for MSP, this government is neglecting farmers' issue. So, we want to have a big rally and protest all anti-farmer steps of the UPA government," Naidu added.
Left's parleys with the Third Front came even as US Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs Nicholas Burns said on Monday that time was running out for the landmark nuclear deal.
The UPA and its Communist allies agreed on Monday to hold next month one last meeting over the deal with the United States, clearly indicating that New Delhi had backtracked on pushing the pact into the backburner.
India needs to conclude a safeguards agreement with the International Atomic Energy Agency, get approvals from the Nuclear Suppliers Group and a second backing from the U.S. Congress before the deal can come into force.
Although it faces no formal deadline, Washington wants the pact -- considered highly lucrative for American firms -- clinched next year before the end of Bush's term to avoid its fate becoming uncertain under a new administration.