Left position on N-deal after draft accord

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New Delhi, Jan 19: The Left parties will firm up their stand on the Indo-US nuclear deal once the government comes up with the draft of the safeguards agreement being discussed with the International Atomic Energy Agency(IAEA).

This was stated by CPI leaders A B Bardhan and Shamim Faizi at the party's 125-member national Council, which concluded its three-day delibrations in Chennai today. The Natioanl Council was aimed at giving a final shape to the draft Political Resolution which is to be presented at the five-day 20th party Congress beginning March 23 in Hyderabad.

The Left parties statement comes amid reports that a team of Indian officials is close to finalising the draft agreement with the IAEA.

It came a day after Kerala Chief Minister and CPI(M) Polit Bureau member V S Achuthanandan asserted that the CPI(M) would not hesitate to pull plug on the Nuclear Pact. Mr Achuthanandan's assertion contradicts party patriach Jyoti Basu and party general secretary Prakash Karat's reported clarification that while the party opposed the deal, there was no threat to the Manmohan Singh government.

Talking to UNI, the CPI leaders said the party's national council, have finalised the Political Resolution draft and has called upon the party rank and file to conduct a sustained struggle on various issues concerning people.

The Left party urged the Centre to ensure ''proper and effective'' implementation of the National Rural Employment Guarantee (NREG) scheme , the Right to Information Act and the Tribals Act among others.

The Left party's call assumes special significance with the draft CAG performance audit of the implementation of the NREG scheme pointing towards ''significant deficiencies''.

The CPI has reiterated its commitment to the ideology of Marxism-Leninism and build Socialist India. The CPI's assertion can be seen in the context of CPI(M) patriach Jyoti Basu's endrosement of West Bengal Chief Minsiter Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee's advocacy of capitalism as the only way to promote industrialisation in the state.

Mr Basu's remark earned the ire of the CPI(M) allies in the Left Democratic Front government, who accused him of deviating from the party's socialist path.

The National Council also demanded the Centre to quickly restart the Sethsamudram Shipping Canal Project and its expeditious completion saying the move was necessary not only from the point of the country's economy but the internal security as well.

It urged the Centre to immediately repeal the amendments made in the Essential Commodities Act by the then NDA government enabling the private traders to stockpile foodgrains and manipulate market price.

The scrapping of future trading in foodgrains to contain prices was also necessitated, the party said.

Alleging that the country was in the grip of unprecedented price rise for more than two years, it said there was total collapse of the public distribution system. The state quota has been reduced and materials allotted for PDS were smuggled into the black market.

Condemning the inaction of the government in this regard, it urged the government to immediately take steps in collaboration with state governments to curb price rise, restore the universal public distribution system in its totality, stop the banks from advancing loans for food trading and apply a stringent essential commodities act.

''As a long-term strategy, the Centre should restore the food security of the nation, revive agriculture, increase agricultural production, take steps for adequate food procurement and offer remunerative price to the farmers for their food articles,'' it added.

Another resolution urged the Centre to restore the ration quota of rice and wheat to Kerala.


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