Left tries to rope in SP to support anti-nuke deal moves

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New Delhi, Jun 20 (UNI) Amid deepening standoff between the Left parties and the Manmohan Singh-led UPA government over the nuclear deal, there were efforts by the former to narrow down its differences with the Samajwadi Party on the issue.

The SP has 39 Members in Lok Sabha. Its support to the government would be crucial if the Left parties carry out their threat to withdraw support in the event of the Government going ahead with the deal.

The UPA with 237 members in the Lok Sabha is 35 short of simple majority. The Lok Sabha has an effective strength of 543. The Left parties have 59 members.

The SP had yesterday said that it might reconsider its stand, which is opposition to the deal in its present form, if the UPA government meets its objections on certain points and cames out with new moves to satisfy it.

SP general secretray Ramgopal Yadav is also reported to have met senior CPI(M) leader Prakash Karat. Earlier Senior CPI leader Atul Kumar Anjan also met Mr Yadav at his residence.

Though he claimed there was not much difference between the objections of the Left and the Samajwadi Party to the deal, another SP general secretray Shahid Siddiqui sought to refute this claim, saying the Left might be having objections to the nuclear deal on a lot of counts, but the SP's opposition might be only on some points.

''Moreover, we are not opposed to improving relations with the US.

To sum up we stand opposed to the deal as it stands today, but may reconsider our stand if the UPA government removes the ground for our objection,'' Mr Siddiqui told UNI.

''We may see eye to eye with the Left on many issues, but that does not necessarily mean that our views will be similar on all issues and on all points,'' he added.

Earlier in the day, the Left parties threatened they woud withdraw support to the UPA government if it decided to go to Vienna for talks on a safeguards agreement with the IAEA even as they continued their efforts to build pressure on the allies of the government to stop it from going ahead with the deal.

Meanhwile, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Ms Mayawati is also arriving in the capital tomorrow, and she will address a press conference in which she is likely to express her party's stand in regard to the present situation.

BSP's arch rival SP had of late been perceived as coming closer to the Congress as the latter's relations with Ms Mayawati's party touched a new low recently.

UNI NAZ AM RN2004

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