CPI(M) urges Centre to review Iran policy

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New Delhi, Dec 22 (UNI) The CPI(M), a ally of the Congress-led UPA government, today urged it to review '' its short-sighted and harmful policy towards Iran.'' A resolution adopted by the party's central committee at the conclusion of its three-day meet here said India should act on the basis of its long-term interests and its need for energy security while formulating its policy towards Iran.

The party, which has been opposing the Indo-US nuclear deal, said the United States National Intelligence Estimate's findings that Iran had stopped its nuclear weapons programme in 2003 and had not restarted it as of mid-2007, had knocked the bottom out of the case made by the Bush Administration against Iran on the nuclear issue. But the Indian Government had gone along with the US position and voted twice against Iran in the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

The resolution alleged that under pressure of the unilateral sanctions by the US against Iran, India has been going slow on the Iran gas pipeline project. The State Bank of India was not issuing Letter of Credit (LoC) to Iranian companies, it added.

The CPI(M) said with the Bush Administration's "fabricated stand being exposed, it is incumbent upon the UPA government to review its short-sighted and harmful policy towards Iran." Maintaining that India should act on the basis of its long-term interests and its need for energy security, the party said the government had to tell the country what steps it was taking to ensure that the Iran-Pakistan-India gas pipeline project becomes a reality.

''Clear instructions should go out to the banking sector and oil companies and other business entities that doing business with Iran has the full backing of the government,'' the resolution demanded.

UNI

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