Left asks UPA govt not to succumb to US pressure

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New Delhi, Mar 19 (UNI) The Left Front today warned the government that it would ''pull them (not down)'' if they succumbed to ''pressures of US imperialism'' and called for an alliance of IBSA and BRIC countries to lead developing countries into an new multi-polar world.

CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury, while participating in a short duration discussion on the statement made by External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee in the House on March 3, said India's Foreign Policy which was independent, had tilted towards the US, specifically inthe context of the civilian nuclear agreement.

He also criticised India's soft stance on Palestine and said Israel should be asked to vacate the occupied territories.

''There are pressures on India to change the course of its Foreign Policy... Are we aware of those pressures ? What are we doing to resist those pressures ? He questioned the rationale behind having a military cooperation with Israel, citing the case of launch of an Israeli spy satellite.

He said they would support the government if it resisted the US pressures of dragging India into a strategic relationship for dominating the region.

''We will pull you (not down) if you don't resist those pressures but will support you if you resist,'' he asserted.

Onthe Iran-Pakistan-India gas pipelime project, he blamed India for going slow on it under US pressure. ''Why is not the gas pipeline happening, he asked and warned that US would continue to put pressure on Indian corporates.

On the civilian nuclear deal with the US, Mr Yechury said the 123 agreement was anchored in the Hyde Act and would be imposed on India.

''There are indications that pressures are mounting on India and we will oppose that... India cannot be drawn into a strategic relationship with the US and expect no pressures,'' he said.

He, however, praised India's initiatives on IBSA and called for a combination of IBSA and BRIC processes for a multi-polar world.

CPI's D Raja said the US had a ''grand design'' in Asia and was trying to ''drag'' India into it. The US policies were responsible for the present turmoil in Asia he said and called upon India to play its role.

He called for a consensus on getting the Kutchativu island, which India had gifted to Sri Lanka, back as Indian fishermen were harassed by Sri Lankan Navy whenthey ventured there.

He also called for developing closer relations with Russia and China and lauded India's stand on Pakistan, Nepal and Bangladesh.

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